The association of Fulani Christians has spoken out about the insecurity in Nigeria and other West African countries, saying it is still possible to defeat banditry and kidnapping.
Speaking at the end of its annual conference in Jos, the Plateau State capital on Sunday, the Fulani Christian community blamed the political class for fanning the embers of hatred in Nigeria.
The Fulanis emphasised the need for national unity without racial or religious discrimination, which they say would be a solution to the security challenges facing Nigeria and other West African countries.
The Chairman of Fulani Christians Association, Rev. Aliyu Buba, identified nepotism, injustice and discrimination perpetrated by the political class as causes of violent crimes in Nigeria.
Emphasising the need to fear of God, Rev. Buba stressed that the Bible provides the inspiration to lead a righteous life.
He said, “This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Fulani Christian Association and since then we have been committed to peace building.
“Let me explain that historically it’s a taboo amongst the Fulanis to either steal or kidnap someone. Sadly, today the Fulani race has been stereotyped, designated as kidnapping race, banditry race, cattle rustling race and other violent criminal gangs.
“I believe the Fulani Christian Association can play a role to ending violent crimes. I’m calling on our Fulani Muslim counterparts to accept us as fellow Fulani so that together we can work to end terrorism in this country and West Africa.”
The event was attended by Christian Fulanis from across Nigeria, Cameroon, Niger, Burkina Faso and Mali.