President, l Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday restated his opposition to state police, saying it was not an option for addressing insecurity in the country.
The President also insisted that the establishment of grazing routes would solve the problem of farmers, herders’ clashes in the country.
Buhari, who said these during an interview with Channels Television, also dismissed Igbo leaders’ plea for the release of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra’s leader, Nnamdi Kanu. The President dismissed their plea, saying he would not interfere with the judiciary.
He added that Kanu had to defend himself after making several accusations against his regime while he was out of the country. Responding to a question, he said, “There is one institution that I wouldn’t dare interfere with – that is, judiciary. Kanu’s case is with the judiciary.
“But what I wonder is when Kanu was safely in Europe, abusing this administration, I never really thought that he wanted to voluntarily come to defend himself on the accusations he has made. So, we are giving him the opportunity to defend himself in our system, and not to be abusing us from Europe as if he was not a Nigerian.
“Let him come here, criticise us here. Nigerians know that I don’t interfere with the judiciary. Let him be listened to. For those who are saying that we should release him, no, we cannot release him”
Buhari also insisted that grazing routes must be restored across the country to address the gory seasonal farmers-herders clashes.
Speaking on Wednesday, Buhari said, “The Ministers of Agriculture, from Audu Ogbeh to Mahmud now; one of the issues I discussed with them is to go and get the gazettes of past republics, especially of northern states.
“There are cattle routes and grazing grounds, and herders are confined to those areas. Those that go outside it were arrested. So we said we have to go back to that system again to make sure that we prepare the grazing areas, windmills and even veterinary departments so the herders won’t veer into farms.
“What we have to do is start from bottom-upwards. We must ensure that the grazing areas and ponds are secured for them, so they don’t have to go through people’s farms.”
The President expressed surprise over the clashes between people who, he said, used to co-exist in peace for decades. He said the problems were communal and could only be solved at community levels.
Asked about state policing, the President said, “State police is not an option. Find out the relationship between local governments and the governors. Is the third tier of government (local governments) getting what they should get constitutionally? Are they getting it? Let the people in the local government tell you the truth, the fighting between local governments and the governors.”
When asked when restructuring will take place given that the All Progressives Congress promised to install true federalism, Buhari said he didn’t understand the concept of restructuring.