Tunde Omolehin, Sokoto
The Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammadu Sa’ad, Abubakar III, and other stakeholders in Sokoto, Kebbi and Zamfara states, have urged for effective dialogue with bandits operating in the states, saying such move is in line with Islamic tenets.
They spoke through a communiqué is- sued at the end of a town hall meeting on security issues ravaging the three states and organised by the Sultanate Council in collaboration with Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Sokoto State Council. The meeting was attended by Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal of Sokoto State, Deputy Governor of Kebbi State, Colonel Sama’ila Yombe (rtd) and other traditional rulers in the states.
The communiqué, jointly signed by the Emir of Argungu, Alhaji Sama’ila Muhammad Mega and Sokoto State NUJ chairman, Isa Abubakar Shuni, urged the Federal Government to initiate a national traditional authorities’ conference on domestic and border security. It explained that such conference’s resolutions should be implemented at the local government and state levels.
The meeting also recommended that any traditional ruler found to be involved in ban- ditry or any criminal activities should not only be deposed but also prosecuted in line with extant procedures and due process. It affirmed the resolve of traditional leaders to fully support political leaders in providing good governance for our people:
“On-going dialogue with bandits in the states is in line with Islamic tenets, should be encouraged and reappraised to ensure that all those involved are adequately evaluated to ensure that enduring peace prevails.” The meeting, however, urged relevant investigative security agencies to expedite action in the prosecution of suspects awaiting trial over alleged heinous crimes, such as banditry, kidnapping and murder as quick dispensation of justice will serve as deterrent to others:
“Governments at all levels should redefine the role of traditional authorities, known for their historical roles of alternative dispute resolution, in making safety, security management and the judicial/conflict resolution effective. The media should not glamorize the exploits of criminals, such as kidnappers so as not to entice gullible youth into engaging in the act.
“Federal Government should ensure that the nation’s security architecture is reorganized and revamped and should specifically involve the use of technology; further a massive recruitment of properly vetted persons is undertaken and that state and community leaders are meaningfully involved in the process. It was believed that such a reorganisation would meet the challenging trends in violent crimes.”