The Federal Government has been called upon to create special courts to deal with cases of banditry, kidnapping, ransom demanding and unlawful carrying of weapons.
The government was also charged to be proactive and to secure necessary and updated intelligence to deal with organised crimes.
This call was contained in a statement jointly signed yesterday by former president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo and Sheik Ahmad Abbubakar Gumi in Abeokuta, Ogun State.
The renowned islamic cleric had led eight others including Prof. Usman Yusuf, Mallam Tukur Mamu, Dr. Umar Ardo, Dr. Ibrahim Abdullahi, Suleiman Gumi, Alhaji Suleiman Yakubu and Mallam Buba Mohammed, to visit the former president at his penthouse residence inside the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library, Abeokuta.
The visit was part of Gumi’s continued efforts to find solutions to security challenges in the country, particularly the menace of banditry, kidnapping and ransom payment.
Obasanjo and Gumi, who proposed the slogan of the special court as ‘Security is the responsibility of all Nigerians’ declared that the menace of banditry, kidnapping and other crimes leading to general insecurity in Nigeria was a nationwide phenomenon.
They noted that people from different parts of the country and outside are involved in the security challanges and urged Nigerians not to encourage or support criminality.
They identified the remote causes of insecurity as educational and economic disparities in the country, and negative use of religion and ethnicity by unscrupulous politicians.
Part of the statement read: “Solutions must be seen and provided on short, medium, and long-term bases and must be composed of stick and carrot for the offender and the vulnerable. Federal government must be proactive, secure necessary and updated intelligence to deal with organised crimes and have common policy for the nation. It is not solving the problem when one state goes for negotiation and molly-cuddling of criminals and another one goes for shooting them. Nor should one state go for ransom payment and another one going against. The hardened criminals must be hard hit with stick. Unlawful carrying of arms should be very seriously punished.
“Special courts should be created to deal promptly with cases of banditry, kidnapping, ransom demanding and unlawful carrying of weapons. Let the slogan be: Security is the responsibility of all Nigerians.”
The delegation was received by Obasanjo; Agura of Gbagura, Oba Babajide Bakre; Chairman of the Ogun State Christian Association of Nigeria, Bishop Tunde Akin-Akinsanya; Chief Imam of Egbaland, Sheikh Sa’addallah Alade Bamigbola; Kenny Martins; Ola Babajide Jaiyeoba; Tony Ojeshina, Chief Imams of Oke-Ona, Gbagura Owu and Vitalis Ortese.