The presidency has dismissed the insinuations that President Muhammadu Buhari is taking a soft approach to the herdsmen crisis in the country based on ethnic affiliations.Most herdsmen in the country are Fulani, the same ethnicity as President Buhari.
Presidential spokesman, Garba Shehu, said on Channels TV on Monday, February 15, that there is no substance to such insinuations. According to Shehu, “thousands” of criminal herdsmen are being tried and convicted across the country for illegal activities.
He expressed hope that the Nigerian police will publish the names of the criminal herders being prosecuted to validate his statement.
“I hope that the police will take responsibility and publish the full list of Fulani herders who are undergoing trial in various states, particularly in Benue state.”
“Trials are going on, convictions are being made and the President cannot be complicit in the kind of things that are being said of him.”
Shehu added that President Buhari is fully aware of the country’s security situation and is working to ensure the safety of lives and properties.
He noted that community leaders need to work with the president to effectively address the security crisis.
Amid the rising security challenges, Shehu said the Nigerian military is currently overstretched because they are active in at least 34 of the 36 states of the federation, including the FCT.
He added that the Air Force, the police, and others are recruiting “day and night” while people are being trained in special operations.