Violent herdsmen in Northern Nigeria who have resorted to banditry should be given one-third of $1 billion before killings and kidnappings which they spearhead will stop, Islamic cleric, Sheik Ahmad Gumi, has demanded.
“For three year’s you have spent $1 billion, and now you need another $1 billion. But, I said one-third of that will enlighten them, and they will stop killing. Have you tried it? Nobody tried it,” Mr Gumi suggested on Thursday at a peace conference by the Center for the Advancement of Human Dignity and Value held at Arewa House in Kaduna State.
The self-appointed negotiator of the criminals who has in the past demanded amnesty for them also said bandits and their families ought to be respected and accorded human rights privileges other Nigerians enjoy.
“The bandits also have empathy as we have; they have families, children. The first step is to use psychology on them. They aired their grievances and are ready to change.
“They should be respected and should be given all the human rights everybody has,” he added.
His stance that the criminals will turn over a new leaf when pardoned differs from those of Katsina, Niger and Zamfara State governments who have partnered with the criminals and regretted their actions.
The governors of the afro-mentioned states have all publicly lamented how bandits they granted amnesty with financial and material support reneged thereafter and continued their nefarious activities.