“And also in Kaduna, both Christians and Muslims have suffered alike. I am told that people can hardly go to the farm in Zaria, Kaduna because of the activities of bandits, and most of the people in Zaria are Muslims,” Fr. Blaise further said.
The Priest was probed on whether it is true that most of the crimes are being done by herdsmen of the Fulani ethnic group.
“It’s true that the Fulani herdsmen are deeply involved in perpetrating crimes in the North and especially in the Middle Belt region, but it is not all the Fulani that are involved,” he responded.
The Nigerian Priest noted that there are many groups from the local ethnic tribes that are also involved in criminality, banditry, kidnapping and cattle rustling. Some of these groups, he said, have even formed militia groups.
“In fact, there are some of the Fulani that have formed criminal gangs with the local Christian groups and are terrorizing both the Fulani and the local ethnic groups,” the official of the Church-based peace initiative revealed, and added, “Thus, most of what is happening is more of criminality and also a conflict over resources.”
(Story continues below)
Subscribe to our daily newsletter
At ACI Africa, our team is committed to reporting the truth with courage, integrity, and fidelity to our faith. We provide news from Africa, as seen through the teachings of the Catholic Church - so that you can grow in your Catholic faith.
When you subscribe to the ACI Africa Updates, we will send you a daily email with links to the news you need.
Use the form below to stay informed, and to tell us where we can send the ACI Africa Updates!
As part of this free service you may receive occasional offers from us at EWTN News and EWTN. We won't rent or sell your information, and you can unsubscribe at any time.
So far, there are about 2.5 million internally displaced persons in North Eastern Nigeria, 680,000 in Cameroon and over 294,000 refugees in Chad and Niger owing to terrorism in Northern Nigeria.
Killings have also been recorded in thousands, with other organizations “inflating” the numbers for reasons that Fr. Blaise highlighted in his interview with the Catholic aid organization ACN.
“There is serious politics in the reports because different groups keep on inflating their figures so as to attract both local and international sympathy,” said the Cleric whose investigations at the University of Jos is dubbed, “Conflict between farmers and herders in the middle belt region and the mediation of third parties”.
“Sometimes, bandits also dress like soldiers when carrying out attacks,” he said, and added, “Because of all these factors, there are always accusations and counter accusations either between the Fulani and the local groups, between Christians and Muslims, or between farmers and herdsmen, so much so that the facts are beclouded.”