OHANEZE Ndigbo president Chief Nnia Nwodo has called on community leaders across the southeast geo-political zone to fish out miscreants who are hiding under the pretext of being Fulani cattle herdsmen to carry out heinous crimes like kidnapping and murder.
Of late, Nigeria has been in the grip of herdsmen who have led a crime wave across the country including kidnapping, murder, armed robbery, banditry and communal attacks on farming villages. As the security forces remain overwhelmed by the crisis, non-Fulani bandits have joined in the orgy, sometimes dressing as Fulanis to create the impression they are herdsmen.
Yesterday, Chief Nwodo, who is the head of the umbrella Igbo body worldwide, urged traditional rulers, town unions and local vigilantes to fish the miscreants out and hand them over to law enforcement. He said that some Igbos were taking advantage of the attacks of herdsmen in the region to kidnap and murder innocent people.
“Assassinations, kidnapping and invasion of one or two holy places have been reported in the social and regular media. Worthy of note is the arrest of those responsible for the murder of two catholic priests and the kidnap of a traditional ruler and useful confessions have been made.
“Ohanaeze also notes that a few miscreants among us have exploited the Fulani rampage to engage in kidnapping and murder of innocent citizens. We urge our traditional rulers, town unions and local vigilantes to fish them out and hand them over to law enforcement agencies,” Chief Nwodo added.
He praised the actions of security personnel in the region while calling on traditional rulers to complement the efforts to keep southern Nigeria secured by handing over killers and kidnappers in their communities to relevant authorities. Chief Nwodo said: “As we speak, 1,700 forest guards are being recruited and new access roads are being constructed into desolate and hidden areas of our forests.”