- A new school has been established for some of the herdsmen operating in some regions of the country
- The school was built by a popular Islamic scholar, Sheikh Ahmad Gumi, who has been in the news advocating for bandits
- According to the preacher, the school which is in a forest in Kaduna state would help curb the growing banditry across the country
Islamic scholar and former military officer, Sheikh Ahmad Gumi, has established a new school for herdsmen inside a forest in Kaduna state.
Vanguard reports that the Sheikh had insisted that providing such a facility for the herdsmen in remote locations would be instrumental to addressing the conflict ideologies of the herders.
The school named Sheikh Uthman Bin Fodio Centre is located at Kagarko Grazing Reserve near Kohoto Village in Kaduna state.
The school which was also built by the Islamic preacher is funded by the Mosque Foundation Limited, Kaduna state.
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Decrying the level of insecurity in the country, the Sheikh said the bandits are ready to drop their arms for educational opportunities.
Punch reports that the Sheikh also said that the bandits would gladly turn new leaves should basic facilities be provided for them in their various communities.
According to the Sheikh, if the centre which is programmed to educate the herders is to be replicated all over various states of the country, there would be less conflict between herdsmen and farmers.
He advised that instead of investing billions of dollars in military hardware to fight the bandits, such funds should be put into educating and providing the needed facilities for the herdsmen.
"I have spoken with the bandits and they have expressed willingness to drop their arms and embrace peace if their children can be given education and other social amenities."
Gumi's motivation for establishing a school for herdsmen
The Sheikh said he was motivated to commence this project to solve the insecurity challenges bedevilling the country.
Gumi said perpetrators of every crime are drawn from a pool, usually from the grassroots and community level.
He said analysis carried out by him (Gumi) shows that education is the best approach to solving this insecurity challenge.
“What we have here is a centre containing six classrooms that can be used for primary, secondary schools and at various times you can teach all categories at all times and the place will be engaged for 24 hours."
"This is because the herdsmen usually take their cattle out by 10 am and bring them back by dawn or sunset so they have 2 hours before they take their cattle away and we have two to three hours because we like to put some solar light so that they can read 8, 9, 10 in the night so that the herder can go and come back.”
Gumi tells Nigerians how to treat bandits
Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that Gumi had urged every Nigerian to treat bandits with some level of dignity.
The Sheikh condemned the dehumanisation and terrorising of bandits operating in the northwest region of the country.
According to Gumi, Nigerians can live in peace with the criminals with a few tips he made available.
Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria calls for Gumi's arrest
Also, a Christain Association had condemned some of the utterances of Sheikh Gumi in favour of the bandits who have been killing and maiming Nigerians.
The Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria called for Gumi's arrest while describing his utterances as questionable.
The association said Sheikh Gumi should be held as the number one suspect for the activities of the criminals in the northwest region.