Olufemi Olaniyi, Ibadan
A former Minister of Aviation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode, has said Nigerians should be licensed to carry sophisticated arms like AK-47 if Fulani herdsmen are permitted to secure themselves with the same type of weapon.
He said this on Thursday when he visited Yoruba activist, Chief Sunday Adeyemo, who is popularly known as Sunday Igboho, at his residence in Ibadan.
Fani-Kayode said the best strategy to tackle the insecurity facing the nation was for the government to rise up to its responsibility to defend the people.
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He, however, said another option to reduce mindless killings of law-abiding Nigerians was for the government to permit individuals to bear arms.
The former minister said since the Minister of Defence, Major General Bashir Magashi (retd), also urged Nigerians to defend themselves against kidnappers and killers, they should be allowed to carry sophisticated weapons to defend themselves effectively.
Fani-Kayode said, The Bauchi State Governor said a few days ago that Fulani herdsmen should be allowed to carry AK-47, but I disagree with him on that, but that is his own opinion. If you go by that principle, it makes absolute sense that if Fulani herdsmen are allowed to carry AK-47 to defend their cows and their lives if they feel threatened, then it is also logical that farmers, local people and each one of us to also have that right to defend ourselves against Fulani herdsmen or against those seeking to come and kill us.
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I am totally behind that and I like that. Why not, Americans have that right. If we had that long time ago the killings we are witnessing now would not have the kind of atrocities being committed all over the country.
Insecurity is not limited to the South-West; you will be surprised at what is going on in the North. But the best way is for the government to rise up and defend us; that is why we pay them.
He said Igboho was not against law-abiding Fulani or any person from anywhere living in the South-West, but his position was that criminal herdsmen must stop their criminal activities or be flushed out of the region.
Fani-Kayode described Igboho as a freedom fighter, who was ready to collaborate with anyone who wants the region to be at peace.
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Igboho said he adopted what Fani-Kayode said, saying he was against criminal herdsmen and other criminals.
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Olufemi Olaniyi, Ibadan