The new Sultan of Sokoto, Saad Abubakar, also the spiritual leader of Nigeria’s Muslim, sits on his throne during his coronation ceremony in Sokoto, Northern Nigeria, March 3, 2007. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde (NIGERIA) – RTR1N1ZM
The Sultan of Sokoto, Sa’ad Abubakar III, provided new insight into the festering farmers/herdsmen crisis when he stated that so-called Fulani herdsmen who move around with guns causing violence and attacking farmers are not Nigerians, but foreign terrorists.
According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Sultan Abubakar said this in his Eid el-Kabir message to the Muslim Ummah in Nigeria when he said the marauders are foreigners coming into Nigeria to cause a breach of the peace.
“They are therefore terrorists and should be treated as such by the Nigerian security agencies. The Nigerian herdsmen are very peace-loving and law abiding. Our diversity should be our strength and God has not made a mistake by creating us with diverse differences,” he said.
The Sultan, who noted with concern that some ‘‘bad eggs” had infiltrated the Fulani herdsmen, challenged the security agencies to be proactive.
The Sultan however acknowledged there were problems between the Fulani herdsmen and the farmers, which should only be resolved through dialogue and stressed the need for all Nigerians to live peacefully with each other, irrespective of any religious or ethnic differences.
Sultan Abubakar said Nigeria would continue to lag behind if there is no peace and unity. His words: “Our diversity should be our strength and God has not made a mistake by creating us with diverse differences.”
On the economic hardship in the country, he appealed to Nigerians to go back to the farms and urged them to learn to be more productive, rather than solely waiting for the government to provide all their needs.
Promising to continue to offer prayers, and provide counsel to the Federal and state governments, he also commended the three tiers of government for their ongoing efforts to provide succour to Nigerians.
The event was witnessed by Second Republic President Shehu Shagari, Gov. Aminu Tambuwal, his deputy, Ahmed Aliyu, and Alhaji Aliko Dangote, among other dignitaries.