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Nigerian security agencies know bandits’ hideouts —Sheikh Gumi



I have no regret over my role in Obasanjo, Atiku reconciliation —Sheikh Gumi

Controversial Islamic scholar, Sheikh Ahmad Gumi, has alleged that Nigerian security agencies know the hideouts of bandits in different forests in the North.

Gumi who disclosed this while speaking on a radio programme in Kaduna on Tuesday, challenged security agencies to deny the allegations as many of them had accompanied him to the bandits’ hideouts during negotiations to free kidnap victims during the regime of former President Muhammadu Buhari.

“I don’t think the security agents are truthful with Nigerians. When I go, I go with them (bandits), I don’t go alone,” Gumi said when asked if security forces know where the bandits have their hideouts.

Gumi who insisted that the bandits are mainly herdsmen, said most of them are largely Nigerians with a few foreigners who are fighting back from a position of marginalisation.

The cleric also portrayed the bandits as marginalized citizens deprived of basic social services like education, infrastructure, and water.

On the abducted 287 students from Kuriga Government Secondary and LEA Primary Schools in the Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna who were kidnapped by bandits on March 7, Gumi renewed his call for government to negotiate with the bandits for the release of the victims.

Gumi added that negotiation would lead to a safe return of the captives without necessarily involving financial transactions, hinting at potential prisoner swaps.

Recall that the cleric had proposed to lead negotiations for the release of the pupils and their teachers a few days after they were abducted.

In a message he directed to President Bola Tinubu, Gumi had warned against the President towing the path of Buhari by refusing to negotiate with bandits.

He frowned at the refusal of the Kaduna State government to negotiate with bandits, saying it was a wrong step to take.

“The government’s stand of no negotiation with the bandits is an unfortunate position. My advice is that the government should dialogue with the bandits not only for these Kuriga school children abduction but all the cases.”

Sheikh Gumi also volunteered to lead negotiations with the bandits on behalf of government to see to the quick release of the abducted students.

“I am ready to lead a holistic dialogue between the government and bandits. It is a religious duty for me to do so for peace,” he had said.

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