‘Bandits Will Have More Free Reign In Nigeria If Niger Is Attacked’ — National Missioner, Abdurrahman Ahmad

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National Missioner, Ansar-ud-Deen Society, Abdurrahman Ahmah recently led a delegation of Islamic scholars to meet with Niger’s coup leader, General Abdourahamane Tchiani.

The meeting aimed to pave a peaceful path to reinstate President Mohamed Bazoum, who was overthrown on July 26, 2023.

Under the leadership of Nigeria’s President Bola Tinubu, the Economic of West African States (ECOWAS) has warned of potential military intervention if diplomatic negotiations falter.

In pursuit of diplomacy, Tinubu appointed a team, headed by ex-Nigerian leader Gen Abdulsalami Abubakar, to engage with the junta in Niamey.

However, the coup leaders declined the meeting upon the team’s arrival.

In a recent TV interview, Ahmad shared insights from his Niger visit.

He stated that the junta felt betrayed, primarily because Nigeria cut off Niger’s electricity supply without hearing their side.

Ahmad said, “He (Tchiani) said it was under the heat of the anger that they reacted the way they did and asked for forgiveness repeatedly.”

He also warned that it is not in the best interest of Nigeria at this point to fight Niger because it is like declaring war on ourselves.

Speaking on what is at stake if ECOWAS goes to war, Ahmad said, “Nigeria has perhaps the longest border with the Niger Republic. About seven northern states share a border with the Niger Republic.

“These are the same people who speak the same language, share the same culture and have historical and cultural ties that date back to 100 years.

It is not in the best interest of Nigeria at this point to fight Niger because it is like declaring war on ourselves. That is number one.

“Two, northern borders are very porous and it is sometimes very difficult to patrol and monitor. It will be an opportunity to strengthen insurgency, for bandits to have free reign and intensify their cross-border attacks.

“Three, the President is not yet 100 days in office and we think that it is not going to be in the best interest of this administration to start a war that may be fought differently; so, as religious leaders and patriots, we thought that we should make this contribution to national cohesion.”

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