Sheikh Ahmed Gumi, a Kaduna-based Islamic cleric who has been advocating peace deals with terrorist herders, has described Nigerian journalists as criminals for branding the terrorists as criminals in their reporting.
He stated this when he appeared on Arise TV programme, Arise News on Wednesday night.
He said the terrorists who have wrecked havoc on human lives and properties in predominantly the northern region and some parts of the southern region of the country will be discouraged to surrender their arms if they are continuously referred to as criminals.
“You are emphasising on criminality, I don’t know. Even the Press (journalists) are criminals too because they are putting oil into fire. These people are listening to you, don’t address them as criminals if you want them to succumb,” the Sheikh said.
“Youths are ready to put down their weapons, now they are hearing you call them criminals, how do you want them to cooperate. So you have to show them that they are Nigerians and that they should not hurt children and that they should be law abiding, these are the language we want to hear from the Press to assist us in getting the boys.
“When we talk to them in nice a wordings they are ready to put their weapons down, they are ready to listen to us, but when the language is about criminality, kill them, jail them, then this is what we will end up having,” Gumi added.
Recall that Gumi had on Monday claimed that the terrorists are fighting a war to exist after years of their existence being threatened.
Speaking on Channels Television’s programme, Politics Today, the soft-spoken cleric claimed that for every one victim of the terrorist herders insurgent acts, they have ten victims on their end.
He said, “For every victim of kidnappings you are talking about, you will have ten times victims among themselves (the terrorists).
“None of us has a victim of the military or lynched in town, do you know that their situation is that anyone with the Fulani physique on a motorbike is automatically arrested and incarcerated.”