PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari on Friday broke his long silence on the attacks allegedly perpetrated by Fulani herdsmen across the country, saying that it was a genuine concern that was being addressed.
He had come under criticism for remaining silent despite daily reports of atrocities blamed on the herdsmen in parts of the country.
Receiving the Northern Christian Leaders Eagles Eyes Forum at the State House, Abuja, he also said his administration would not hide anything from Nigerians in its resolute commitment to restore the economic fortunes of the country and deliver prosperity to Nigerians.
The President emphasised that the Federal Government would continue to prioritize the safety of lives and properties, in addition to equipping Nigerian farmers with the right tools, technology and techniques to boost agriculture.
He said: “You must tell your followers the truth about the country. We have nothing to hide because we have no other country but Nigeria.
“Tell them to give us a chance to stabilize the country. Your concern for the security, unemployment, anti-corruption campaign and the frequent altercations between herdsmen and farmers are genuine concerns.
“I know the Ministry of Agriculture and the Governors Forum are doing a lot to resolve the lingering crisis between herdsmen and farmers, we must give them a chance.”
Buhari thanked the Christian leaders for their support to the Federal Government’s anti-corruption campaign and other policies geared towards reviving the economy.
He added: “It is saddening that some of those who stole from our national resources put the money in their personal accounts.
“However, it is gratifying that those who stole money and shared funds meant for the purchase of arms for our military are regretting their actions and they will regret more.
“Those caught in corruption will have themselves to blame.”
He appealed to the religious leaders not to lose hope in the unity, stability and progress of the country.
In his remarks, leader of the Forum, Pastor Aminchi Habu called on Nigerians to support the President’s anti-corruption war and his vision to restore the lost glory of Nigeria.
According to him, “in your administration, I see a new Nigeria where the fear of bribery, corruption and extortion is the beginning of wisdom.
“I see a new Nigeria, where tribalism, religion and ethnicity is no longer a barrier that separates us but a bond that unites us for a greater tomorrow.”