By Francis Sardauna in Katsina

The Katsina State Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Shitu Shitu, on Thursday said President Muhammadu Buhari is not behind herdsmen/farmers killings as claimed by some people in the country, describing the allegation as a calculated attempt by ‘self-seeking’ politicians to blackmail the president ahead of 2019 general election.

Shitu, who disclosed this in an interview with THISDAY, said that such opinions were intended to instigate the citizenry against the president and that Nigeria is a secular state where no president can sponsor killings or enforce any religion on any person.

He said: “It is a misinformation for anyone to say that President Muhammadu Buhari is behind herdsmen and farmers killings in the country. Buhari is the only president who works tirelessly to ensure that there is peace in Nigeria.”

The APC chairman maintained that his party was not perturbed because as the election year approaches, people could fabricate stories to heat up the polity.

According to him, “Some misguided elements who are miscreants, some of them pose as herdsmen and they go and do cattle rustling, shoot the owners of cattle and take their cattle away.”

He, however, reiterated that Buhari was not silent over the killings across the country by suspected herdsmen, rather he has condemned them.

Shitu further stated that President Buhari knows the economic implications of the activities of herdsmen.

“They were trained in Libya as Gaddaffi stockpiled arms and ammunitions over the years and when he was killed his arms were dispersed across West Africa comprising Nigeria, Mali, Niger, Chad and some others that have prevalence of violence and random killings,” Shitu said.