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Herdsmen learnt kidnapping from Niger Delta militants: Islamic cleric

Violent herdsmen accused of being behind rising insecurity across the country learnt their atrocious acts from the Niger Delta militants, a popular Islamic cleric Ahmad Gumi claims.

Mr Gumi who has been demanding amnesty for the problematic pastoralists made this known while featuring on Africa Independent Television (AIT) on Tuesday morning.

He said when Niger Delta militants took up arms struggling for the emancipation of the South-South geo-political zone they were granted amnesty, a situation that should have been replicated to herders who have lost their animals to rustlers.

“We didn’t take a different route of trying to solve this problem and that is why we are still here today. And when we say amnesty, we don’t mean that anyone proved to be involved in murder should go free as such,” Mr Gumi said.

“They learnt kidnapping from MEND. I do not see any difference. They were the first victims of rustling. Their cattle is their oil. What we are seeing now is more of an insurgency than banditry. I can say 10 percent of the herders are criminals not 90 percent, in the end, they took up weapons to protect themselves from extinction.

“They themselves can take care of the little remnants of criminals among themselves because they don’t want anybody to bring mayhem to them,” he added.

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