Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari, has directed the seven governors of the country’s northwest to put machinery in place as soon as possible to put an end to banditry in the region.
Atiku Bagudu, the governor of Kebbi State, announced this on Sunday.
Bagudu, who is also the Chairman of the APC Governors’ Forum, made the announcement in Birnin-Kebbi as part of a Fulani Stakeholders’ Peace, Security, and Unity Meeting.
The president’s directive, according to the governor, was to ensure the immediate restoration of normalcy in the region.
He stated that the President was fully committed to adequately protecting the lives and property of all law-abiding and peaceful citizens.
Bagudu praised the military and other security agencies for their unwavering commitment to addressing the country’s security challenges.
“They are a negligible few, and we should all brace the odds,” he said, urging Nigerians to be less fearful in confronting the enemies of peace and unity.
“Securing the nation’s security is a collective responsibility, and as such, all hands must be on deck in this direction.“
Bagudu also reaffirmed his earlier promise to lead the search for the Federal Government College (FGC) Birnin Yauri students and staff who had been kidnapped.
According to the Nigerian News Agency (NAN), suspected bandits stormed the Unity College on Thursday, June 17 and kidnapped a number of teachers and students.
However, about 11 of the abductees have been rescued so far by a military team.
“We were not elected solely to stay in office, but to do everything in our power to protect the lives and property of all law-abiding citizens,” the governor said.
“We must go to any length to ensure peace, unity, and security, even if it means sacrificing our lives, as religious scriptures demand.”
The Fulani stakeholders meeting, according to Bagudu, was convened to assess progress in addressing the challenges and to propose feasible solutions.
He stated that his government had established a steering committee to investigate grazing reserves, cattle routes, and lingering contentious issues between farmers and herders as a means of achieving long-term peace and security in the state.
“The government is fully aware of the issues raised, and it has already begun implementing some of the committee’s recommendations.
“Regardless of the government’s efforts, the understanding and acceptance of those affected is required to have a positive impact on their lives,” he said.
He promised that his administration would leave no stone unturned in ensuring the safety and security of the state’s citizens.
Bagudu also pledged to continue his administration’s efforts to improve the lives of Fulanis by increasing livestock and dairy production, empowering Fulani women, and expanding other farming activities.