Denys Gauer, outgoing French Ambassador to Nigeria on Friday faulted President Muhammadu Buhari that foreigners are involved in the killings across Nigeria.
The French envoy’s position contradicts insinuation by some Nigerians that the rampaging killer herdsmen are from neighbouring countries.
Recall that Buhari had said that the killings in some parts of Nigeria were as a result of the influx of mercenaries from the Sahel region.
“It has always been there, but now made worse by the influx of armed gunmen from the Sahel region into different parts of the West African sub-region,” the president had said when Justin Welby, archbishop of Canterbury, visited him in London back in April.
But speaking with journalists on Friday in Abuja, Gauer countered Buhari, saying impunity is encouraging the killings in the country and those responsible must be punished.
According to him, killings would stop when justice is served to killers.
On how to stop the killings, he urged the government to persecute those responsible for the killings in order to put an end to it.
“I don’t believe foreigners are involved in the killings across Nigeria.
“The reason for the killings is demography; some people are fighting for land, so there must be direct policy to develop agriculture and animal husbandry.
“I think impunity is encouraging the killings and those responsible must be punished. I don’t believe foreigners are involved in the killings.
“The second is justice. When there is that kind of killing, there must be proper prosecution and perpetrators must be properly sentenced. If that does not happen then, it cannot end.”