…says politicians taking advantage of nationwide killings
Olalekan Adetayo, Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday lamented that human life was increasingly becoming cheap in Nigeria.
He, however, heaped the blame on some unnamed politicians who he accused of taking advantage of the killings associated with herdsmen/farmers clashes in parts of the country.
He said some “desperate people” have continued to pursue their quest for instability and chaos which they hoped would give them an advantage in the coming elections.
Buhari said this in a statement made available to journalists by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu.
The President was reacting to latest clashes in Plateau State during which scores of people have killed.
He said, “We know that a number of geographical and economic factors are contributing to the longstanding herdsmen/farmers clashes.
“But we also know that politicians are taking advantage of the situation. This is incredibly unfortunate.
“Nigerians affected by the herdsmen/ farmer clashes must always allow the due process of the law to take its course rather than taking matters into their own hands.”
The presidential spokesman indicated in the statement that information available to the Presidency showed that about 100 cattle had been rustled by a community in Plateau State, and some herdsmen were killed in the process.
He added that the state governor, Simon Lalong, had invited the aggrieved groups and pleaded against further action while the law enforcement agents looked into the matter.
He regretted that less than 24 hours later, violence broke out.
He added, “Some local thugs then took advantage of the situation, turning it into an opportunity to extort the public, and to attack people from rival political parties.
“There were reports of vehicles being stopped along the roads in the state, with people being dragged out of their cars and attacked if they stated that they supported certain politicians or political party.
“On his way back to Jos after attending the All Progressives Congress’ Convention in Abuja, the state governor had to dismantle a number of illegal roadblocks set up by these thugs.
“There were also a number of dead bodies thugs had killed, lying along the road.” (Punch)