Former President Olusegun Obasanjo and renowned Islamic Cleric, Sheik Ahmad Gumi, have called for special courts to prosecute bandits and kidnappers across the country.
They made the call in a communique issued after a closed-door meeting in Abeokuta on Sunday.
They also called on the Local Government Councils, States, and Federal Government to work together to return out-of-schools children to classes, adding that education remains key to tackling insecurity.
They said that the special courts would cut the long bureaucracy in dealing promptly with cases of banditry, kidnapping, ransom demanding, and unlawful carrying of weapons.
Obasanjo and Gumi added that security remained the responsibility of all Nigerians, saying “we must not advertently or inadvertently, in words, action or inaction encourage or support criminality”.
The duo added that the hardened criminals must be hard hit with a stick, saying unlawful carrying of arms should be seriously punished.
They appealed to the Federal government to take up the issue of security within the Economic Community of West African States towards a regional solution.
“Every community must be encouraged and empowered to stand firm and strong against criminals.
“There should be protected and reward covertly for whistleblowers against criminals living in the community.”
They urged all well-meaning Nigerians to support the government in finding solutions to insecurity by desisting from the blame game, ethnicising as well as regionalising these crimes.
They advised the Federal government to be proactive, secure necessary and updated intelligence to deal with organised crimes as well as have a common policy for the Nation.
”We concluded that to keep Nigeria safe and secure for all Nigerians and others living in Nigeria is a task that all well-meaning Nigerians must engage in separately and collectively.”
The Gumi eight-man delegation include: Prof. Usman Yusuf, Tukur Mamu, Dr Umar Ardo, Dr Ibrahim Abdullahi, Suleiman Gumi, Suleiman Yakubu and Buba Mohammed.
Those present on the side of Obasanjo were Agura of Gbagura, Abeokuta, Oba Babajide Bakre, and Chairman, Christian Association of Nigeria in Ogun, Tunde Akin-Akinsanya.
Other were Chief Imam of Egbaland, Sa’addallah Bamigbola, and Former Chairman of the Police Equipment Fund, Kenny Martins.
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