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Mohammed: Bauchi Gov reiterates rights of herdsmen to wield AK-47s in self-defence

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Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State on Friday, February 19, defended his comment about armed herders, explaining that he used AK-47 as a figure of speech for protection.

Mohammed made this clarification during an interview on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily.

“It is a figure of speech to show you the despondence, the desperation and frustration, and the agony that this particular person is exposed to by his own people, by his own tribe, and by other tribes who have all seen him as a criminal and therefore, he has the inalienable right to protect himself,” the governor said.

Also Read: Afenifere accuses Govs of complicity in insecurity, banditry

“What I said in that context, I was addressing the media people. And the topic was the use of the media to foster national unity and I was trying to situate the problem,” Mohammed explained.

“The Fulani man is so exposed, dehumanised, demonised in fact, because he is being seen as a bandit and so, anywhere he goes, he is being pursued.

“Not only in the southwest or the southeast, even in the north because he is in the cattle route, his commonwealth which I call his cows, are being taken and rustled and of course, sometimes, but they are also fined beyond your imagination. If one cow strays into the farm because the cattle route has been taken away illegally without the authority giving permission, he will be fined seriously, mercilessly.

“And so, he is exposed and then he has no option but to protect himself. We have so many vigilante groups in Nigeria even at the level of government, subregional groups, sub nationals are establishing vigilante groups to make sure that their communities are protected.

“Why wouldn’t the Fulani man protect himself? And if he carries a gun in order to protect himself, it may not be a legal carriage, it may be legal. He may also register and carry it to protect himself.”

 

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