The Southern and Middle Belt Leaders Forum on Wednesday called on President Muhammadu Buhari to sack his spokesperson Mr Femi Adesina.
The Forum, in a statement signed by Yinka Odumakin, South West; Senator Bassey Henshaw, South South; Prof Chigozie Ogbu, South East and Dr Isuwa Dogo, Middle Belt said they were shocked at statements made this week by Adesina on an AIT programme on the killings in parts of the country.
The statement in full:
‘’The attention of Southern and Middle Belt Leaders Forum has been drawn to the scandalous, reckless, insensitive and vexatious statement credited to Mr Femi Adesina, SA Media to the President that all communities opposed to Federal Cattle Territories (FCT) misnamed ranches should choose between their lands and their lives.
“Ancestral attachment? You can only have ancestral attachment when you are alive .If you are taking about ancestral attachment,If you are dead how does the attachment matter?” said Adesina.
‘’We take this ludicrous declaration as a death sentence on all those who oppose the imperialist agenda of the Federal Government to grab lands from communities in Nigeria and hand over to herdsmen for their private business.
‘’Adesina is close to the heart of presidency to know why it has treated killer Fulani herdsmen with kid gloves in the last three years and the arrogance with which he spoke showed they now assume their footsoilders have terrorised us into submission.
‘’This death threat is coming after the president told the Governor of Benue in January to learn how to live with murderers, the IGP saying killers are Nigerians, the Defence Minister claiming that blockage of cattle routes is the reason why herdsmen are killing and the same Adesina telling us the killings done under Buhari in three years have not equalled the number of deaths that occurred under PDP.
‘’This goes to confirm our earlier charge that the role of the President of Nigeria and the duty the president owes to the terror herdsmen are in conflict and there is greater allegiance to the cowtry above the country.
‘’If Mr Adesina keeps his job in the next 24 hours, all doubt would be removed over the statement Gen T.Y Danjuma made that there is a working relationship between the killers and the security forces.
‘’There would be no reason to look for the killer herdsmen again. Nigerians would have to proceed to the International Criminal Court with the charge that what we are facing is state sponsored terrorism.’’