Gumi creates nomadic rights group, describes herdsmen as victims of banditry

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Islamic scholar, Sheikh Ahmad Gumi on Friday formed a herder rights organisation known as the Nomadic Rights Concern, NORIC.

Gumi said NORIC was created to protect and defend herders in the country.

Speaking in Kaduna, Gumi said the Nigerian government should address the herders issue in the same way it handled the Niger Delta youths.

He insisted that the nomadic Fulani had been victims of banditry.

The controversial Islamic scholar reiterated the need for a Ministry of Nomadic Affairs.

According to Gumi: “What I expect from the government is nothing less than what it did when the Niger Delta youths were vandalising the economy.

“These people are also disturbing the Nigerian agriculture which is the backbone of the national economy.

“The least they need is the Ministry of Nomadic Affairs that will look into their affairs.

“The issue that stands out glaringly is that pastoralists are both victims and villains largely because their voices are muffled by an unimaginable level of illiteracy and lack of know-how.

“Their rights are trampled upon or denied, leading to the much avoidable violence in the Nigerian society. Thus, the necessity to establish a non-governmental and apolitical organisation dedicated to peace and harmonious coexistence between various groups and ethnicities, especially amongst headers and farmers.”

Gumi had always advocated a soft landing for herders in the country.

Last year, the Islamic scholar had asked the Federal Government to grant herders linked to banditry amnesty.

He asked the Federal Government to grant herders amnesty as it did to Niger Delta militants.


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