President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday told the National Council of Traditional Rulers that security chiefs had received marching orders to go harder on criminals.
He spoke at the State House in Abuja during a meeting with the council co-chaired by the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III and the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi.
Buhari said he recently instructed the security agencies to shoot anyone found with AK-47 illegally “because AK-47 is supposed to be registered and it is only given to security officials.”
“We closed the borders for some years but the intelligence report I’m getting on a daily basis is that those who are conducting the abductions, the killings and so on are still not short of arms and ammunition,’’ he said.
Buhari said his administration had recorded appreciable successes in the Northeast and South-south.
‘‘But what surprises is what is happening now in the Northwest where the same people, with the same culture are killing each other, taking their livestock and burning properties,” he said.
He decried attacks on police stations and killings of security personnel by criminals, warning that no investor will invest in a country that is unsafe.
He stressed the need for traditional rulers to use their roles and positions as bridge builders in each of their communities to complement government efforts at ensuring peace and security.
‘‘You’re the bridge builders in each of your communities. No one is better placed with your strength of moral authority to ensure that people who visit your communities for either business, leisure or any honest and credible reason are protected and made to feel at home,’’ he said.
In separate remarks, the royal fathers stressed the need for the traditional institution to be assigned definite roles, particularly on peace and security within the ambit of the constitution as well as regular engagement with the National Assembly on multiple fronts.
Addressing State House reporters later, the Etsu Nupe, Yahaya Abubakar, said Buhari asked them to use traditional outfits to secure their domains.