Sheikh Ahmad Gumi, the celebrated Islamic scholar, who has been meeting with bandits in the forest of Kaduna and Zamfara States to find a way out of the security challenges confronting North West of Nigeria, has hinted of a possible alliance between notorious terror group, Boko Haram and bandits if care is not taken.
Gumi spoke on spoke on Monday while featuring on Channels Television’s ‘Politics Today’ programme monitored in Lagos.
“I can say categorically that they (bandits) are not Boko Haram but we have to be very careful because if the pressure is too much, Boko Haram being more international, more connected, may be richer, I am afraid they (bandits) can be influenced by Boko Haram. And we have seen the signs that Boko Haram wants to infiltrate them but so far, they are not Boko Haram, they are ready to lay down their arms.
“There was an incident that happened in Zamfara during the former regime. The Fulani themselves caught some elements of Boko Haram and presented them to the government. So, they are not Boko Haram, they are citizens, they recognise authority and they are ready to lay down their arms and that is why we have to act fast,” Sheikh Gumi said on Monday.
The cleric also said the Nigerian military forces were aware of the whereabouts of bandits who have been involved in high-scale kidnappings in Kankara and Kagara as well as serial killings in different parts of the country.
He, however, said the military forces were re-evaluating their strategies having realised that neutralising the bandits through superior firepower had created more monsters.