A former Head of State Gen Yakubu Gowon (rtd) says it is unfair to blame President Muhammadu Buhari for the incessant killings in the conflict between farmers and herders in some parts of Nigeria.
Gen. Gowon, who was Nigeria’s military ruler between 1966 and 1975, said he believed the president has no hand in the killings.
“The Buhari I know will not be involved in such things. Certainly, no leader will encourage his people to be killed.”
He spoke on Tuesday at the Plateau State Government House when he paid a condolence visit to Governor Simon Lalong over the resurgence of violence in the state.
At least 200 persons were believed dead in the violence in three local government areas in the state.
Gen. Gowon condemned social media reports linking the president to killings in Nigeria, describing the reports as unfortunate.
According to a statement by the state commissioner for Information and Communications, Yakubu Dati, Gen. Gowon decried the past practice of releasing arrested suspects without their trial.
“People arrested should be investigated and prosecuted in Jos where the crime was committed,” the former leader said.
Thanking him for the visit, Mr Lalong said the state government has reviewed the state laws to prosecute perpetrators of killings and these would soon be signed into law.
“We have reviewed adequate laws to prosecute offenders in Jos,” he said.
Mr Lalong thanked Gen. Gowon for standing by the state as a father, adding that all efforts were being made to restore peace to the state.