Shari’ah council demands probe of herdsmen massacre, end to fuel scarcity

  • Council backs Senate on currency swap, says exercise should end in July

The Supreme Council for Shari’ah in Nigeria (SCSN) has called for a thorough investigation into what it described as the massacre of Fulani herdsmen along the Nasarawa/Benue border.

The council’s position was disclosed at a press conference addressed by its Secretary General Nafi’u Baba-Ahmed in Kaduna on Sunday.

Baba-Ahmed said: “The recent brutal murder of Fulani herdsmen along the Nasarawa/Benue border. We condemn in the strongest terms, this cruel massacre of about 30 persons and dozens of their cattle, for obviously no other reason than that it had happened one too many times before, with no action, apology or compensation.

“Clearly, Muslim and Fulanı lives have become fair game, to kill and maim with impunity, with nobody held responsible, sanctions as a deterrent or compensation. It is immaterial whether it was the NAF or a drone.

“We call on the government and the security agencies to transparently investigate and make their findings public. In the meantime, Diyyah (compensation tor death) and the annihilated cattle must be made promptly and publicly by the government/security agencies.”

On the ongoing currency swap the SCSN said “Nigerians are dumbfounded and thoroughly disgusted at the recent senseless, irresponsible and insensitive policy to change the paper currencies without sufficient public enlightenment, logistical backing through deposit taking institutions and an insensitive adamance not to reconsider, review or extend the deadline.

“This is an obvious evidence of the criminal ineptitude of the CBN Governor, and arrogant impunity, with total disregard of his mandate and Nigerians. The immediate consequence of this ineptitude and official impunity, is to further pauperise the over 100 million poor and push multitudes into crime, thereby aggravating the prevailing state of insecurity.

“All pleas to extend the deadline to accommodate those in the rural areas with no access to banking facilities have fallen on deaf ears. Even the few elites in the cites are yet to even sight the new notes. Can you imagine that even beggars have stopped accepting the old ones!”

The council also demanded an immediate end to the ongoing fuel scarcity across the country, saying Nigerians have never had it so bad, even during the civil war.

“Since December last year, Nigerians have been experiencing the excruciating pain of endless fuel scarcity, long hours or even days in endless queues, to buy a resource in abundance in Nigeria which the government claims trillions of naira are spent yearly to import, and yet, it is not available to ordinary Nigerians, at a reasonable price and without any hustle.

“The immediate fall out of this regrettable situation is the aggravation of inflation, a skyrocketing of the prices of all goods and services and the untold suffering of millions of Nigerians.

“The NNPC claims it has 1.6billion liters of refined products, but we have heard such claims before in December and in any case, we are yet to witness any change, except the progressive deterioration of the situation, with a litre of petroleum being sold for as high as N800 in some parts of the country.

“It will be recalled that the President had repeated a campaign promise in 2015, to not only reduce the pump price of petrol, rehabilitate the 4 existing refineries, and do away with fuel subsidy which he termed as “fraud”, and also establish new refineries.

“The most disturbing aspect of this is that nobody will be held to account as no one was ever held as such in the past. It is going to be business as usual, which is now definitely unacceptable to Nigerians. We urge our fellow Nigerians to be extra patient, exercise restraint and use their voter’s cards as the weapons with which to bring about positive change,” Baba-Ahmed said.

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