A Kaduna-based Islamic cleric, Sheikh Ahmed Gumi, has described some Nigerians who are tagging him bandit-lover as bootlickers, stressing that he is only “my country-lover”.
DAILY NIGERIAN reports that Mr Gumi was referring to a presidential spokesman, Femi Adesina, who faulted the cleric’s earlier statement criticising Nigerian Military over their intensified onslaught against bandits in North-West.
Mr Adesina had said: “A bandit-lover is on record as saying a military offensive would not work, and that the bandits “are going nowhere.” True? False. They are going somewhere. And that is: hell.”
Reacting, Mr Gumi, in an article titled, ‘War Has Never Been A Solution Anytime Anywhere’, dissociated himself from the bandit-lover tag.
He said: “You bootlicker that called me a bandit-lover! I am not one, but my country-lover, my region-lover, my state-lover, and my people-lover, and humanity-lover.
“Only a fool would allow his dwelling to be a theatre of war. Unfortunately, how many fools are there. Killing rats in your rat-infested sitting room with an iron rod will only end up destroying your gadgets and furniture probably without killing any. We should not mask out poor governance with artillery power.
“Some disingenuous people say: peace and negotiations with herdsmen, bandits have failed, and your mission has failed!
“I said my mission has not failed but it was sabotaged or discouraged by the same influential people that benefit from the chaos or like us to destroy ourselves and leave the herdsmen in perpetual ignorance.
“Some said we have tried amnesty but it didn’t work. You didn’t try amnesty but tried amnesia. Amnesty without rehabilitation, reconciliation, and reparation is no amnesty. Ask the former Niger Delta Militants who killed security men in the past what an amnesty is. “What stops us from having a federal ministry of Nomadic Affairs where their grievances and complaints will be addressed?”