Popular Kaduna-based Islamic cleric, Dr. Ahmad Gumi, has met with some notorious bandits in Zamfara State and has appealed to them to repent and stop their nefarious activities.
Zamfara state has recorded several attacks from bandits. Recall that after the Kankara school boys were abducted, they were moved to Zamfara state where the negotiation for their release took place before they were returned to Katsina state.
Sahara Reporters reports that Sheik Gumi began his peace moves with visits to the hideouts of bandits terrorizing Zaria-Giwa roads as well as Birnin Gwari area in Kaduna State earlier in the year.
Speaking during the meeting, top armed commanders of the bandit groups, Kachalla Turji of Shinkafi and Kachalla Muhammadu Bello, lamented that security personnel had killed many of their family members, with many of them losing virtually all their possessions through cattle rustling, extortion by security agents and military bombardments.
The commandants say thousands of their youths do not have anything to do and that since they have no means of livelihood, they decided to go into crime. The bandits accused the government of not being sincere in ending instances of banditry and kidnappings.
Responding, the cleric asked them to cease all hostilities and allow him reach out to President Buhari to see how their legitimate grievances could be addressed immediately.
He told them that they should not expect magic from him as his success would depend on the cooperation.
He presented them with Islamic books, including copies of the Qur’an and wrappers.