FORMER President Olusegun Obasanjo and Ahmad Abubakar Gumi have called for the establishment of special courts to deal promptly with cases of banditry, kidnapping, ransom demanding and unlawful carrying of weapons in the country.
A joint statement issued after their meeting on Sunday in Abeokuta, they agreed to continue to work together for solutions for the security of Nigeria and “to seek others to join us as we widely circulate our joint statement”.
The other resolutions are:
- Obasanjo commended Sheikh Gumi for his initiative and encouraged him not to relent in his efforts.
- Gumi thanked Chief Obasanjo for his past services emphasising the special unifying efforts and attributes to the nation and for the warm welcome accorded his delegation.
- The menace of banditry, kidnapping, other crimes and atrocities leading to general insecurity is a nationwide phenomenon.
- We acknowledge that people from different parts of the country and outside the country are involved although some people are more predominantly involved than others.
- We must not advertently or inadvertently, in words, action or inaction encourage or support criminality.
- We acknowledge that the security situation has gone beyond tolerance;
hence Gumi’s coming to Abeokuta to confer with Olusegun Obasanjo.
- We identified the crisis as micro ethnic conflict between the Fulani and many host communities mainly in the North West.
- We identified the remote causes as educational and economic disparities, and the negative use of religion and ethnicity by unscrupulous politicians.
- Solutions must be seen and provided on short-,medium-,and long- term bases and must be composed of stick and carrot for the offender and the vulnerable.
- All well-meaning Nigerians have to be involved in finding solutions by:
- desisting from blame game;
- desisting from ethnicizing these crimes;
- desisting from religionizing these crimes;
- desisting from regionalizing these crimes;
- respecting one another individually, community-wise, locally, ethnically, religiously and socially;
- showing tolerance and accommodation where necessary;
- condemning criminal acts no matter where it is committed and
by whom it is committed in Nigeria;
- encouraging more of carrot solution as may be found necessary;
- sharing information at all levels;
- not accepting criminality as a way of life for any individual or group in our nation;
- Since the end of the civil war, the military are the strongest and most potent instrument and symbol of national unity that we have and we must keep them so.
- State governments must have adequate means of providing security for their people and as chief executives and chief security officers of their states, they must have the means at their disposal to ensure security for all within their states.
- The federal government must be proactive, secure necessary and updated intelligence to deal with organised crimes and have a common policy for the nation. It is not solving the problem when one state goes for negotiation and molly-cuddling of criminals and another one goes for shooting them. Nor should one state go for a ransom payment and another one going against.
- Education is one main key to solve the problem in the long run but it must start now. The 14 million children that should be in school and
are out of school must be put in school with local authorities, state governments, and federal government working together.
- Wean those who are ready to be weaned out of the bushes and crime,
settle and rehabilitate them, give them skills, empower them and let them have employment.
- The hardened criminals must be hard hit with sticks. Unlawful carrying of arms should be very seriously punished.
- The federal government should take the issue up seriously within ECOWAS to work for a regional solution.
- Every community must be encouraged and empowered to stand firm and strong against criminals.
- There should be protection and reward covertly for whistleblowers against criminals living in the community.
Special courts should be created to deal promptly with cases of banditry, kidnapping, ransom demanding, and unlawful carrying of weapons.
- Let the slogan be: Security is the responsibility of all Nigerians.
At the end of the meeting, Gumi extended an invitation to Obasanjo to visit Kaduna with a view to continuing the discourse started, and Obasanjo graciously accepted.
The meeting concluded that to keep Nigeria safe and secure for all Nigerians and others living in Nigeria is a task that all well-meaning Nigerians must engage in, separately and collectively. “Both of us resolve that we would not relent in our efforts. The delegations on both sides acceded to this statement. We agree to meet again in due course to re-examine progress and situation of security in Nigeria,” they said.
The members of Gumi’s delegation of eight, included Prof. Usman Yusuf, Tukur
Mamu, Umar Ardo, Ibrahim Abdullahi, Suleiman Gumi, Suleiman Yakubu and Buba Mohammed, while Obasanjo’s team had Oba Babajide Bakre, Agura of Gbagura, Abeokuta; Bishop Tunde Akin-Akinsanya, Chairman of Ogun State Christian Association of Nigeria; Sheikh Sa' Abdallah Alade Bamigbola, Chief Imam of Egbaland; Kenny Martins, Ola Babajide Jaiyeoba; Rev. Tony Ojeshina, Chief Imams of Oke-Ona, Gbagura, Owu and
– Apr. 05, 2021 @ 10:35 GMT