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Fulani Herdsmen Onslaught: Nigeria At War With Itself – Says Arewa Consultative Forum

Secretary-General of Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF), Mr. Anthony Sani has reacted to the spate of killings and kidnapping across the country, saying that Nigeria is at war with itself.

He described the various security challenges bedeviling the country as being stoked by poverty and unemployment, pointing out overcoming them would require that, the government confront the underlying causes.

Sani who spoke in an exclusive interview with The Nation in Kaduna on Wednesday, said government at all levels should come to terms with the reality that the nation is at war with itself and confront the war with all available means at their disposal.

He, however, warned against giving ethnic and religious coloration to the security threats, arguing such will provide platforms to criminals to commit more crimes, knowing fully well the authority cannot prosecute religion and ethnic nationality.

He commended President Muhammadu Buhari for working round the clock to ensure the Killings are brought to an end within a shortest possible time.

The ACF Secretary-General said: “There are many factors that may account for the killings across the country and they differ from geopolitical zone to zone.

“For examples, those due to clashes between farmers and herders which may have to do with paucity of grazing and farming lands as a result of increase in population and desert encroachment may not be the same with those caused by bandits.

“Still, those by kidnappings are different from those caused by cattle rustling and armed robbery or cultism.

“However, to overcome these security challenges would require the government to identify and confront the underlying causes.

“And for me, I think the insecurity is stoked by poverty which comes with unemployment across the land.

“There seems to be a vicious circle now that farmers cannot farm due to banditry which brings about more hunger and unemployment that result in poverty and, thus, create more insecurity.

“Government and our leaders at all levels should come to terms with the reality that the nation is at war with itself and should confront the war with unity of purpose and with all available means at their disposal.

“These would require more trained security personnel with adequate equipment needed to confront and overwhelm the criminals.

“And as they do so, consciously directed efforts must be applied in identifying and overwhelming the underlying causes of the insecurity.”

He added: “To give ethnic and religious coloration to these challenges is unhelpful because such attitudes unwittingly provide platforms to criminals to stand and commit more crimes because they know the authority cannot prosecute religion and ethnic nationality.”

Reacting calls from some quarters for sack of security chiefs, Anthony Sani said: “I think the President has what it takes to know challenges which the service chiefs face by way of needed trained personnel and the arms.

“He is expected to know the performing service chiefs and those who are not performing, as well as to why those who do not perform fail to perform.

“He is there better placed to make such decisions. This is because he is not only the Commander- in- Chief but also a security expert in his own right.

“Mr. President has noted the unsavory security challenges and the cries across the country.

“As a result, he is doing all within his ability and capacity to bring the killings to an end in the shortest possible time.”

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