The Yoruba Council of Elders (YCE) has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately declare the rampaging herdsmen as terrorists.
It also sought the sack of all security chiefs for alleged incompetence to curtail the killings in parts of the country.
The Yoruba elders noted that some of the service chiefs were overdue for retirement, urging the President to reflect federal character in their reappointment.
The YCE made its position known in a communiqué after an expanded national executive council (NEC) meeting at Ado Ekiti in honour of its late president, Chief Idowu Sofola (SAN) who passed on last Friday.
The elders said the recurrent mayhem in Benue, Taraba and Nasarawa states lent credence to the allegations by a former Minister of Defence,Lt.-Gen. Theophilus Danjuma that the military was on an ethnic cleansing.
Signed by the Secretary General, Dr. Kunle Olajide and Chairman of Ekiti Council of Elders, Prof. J. O. Oluwasanmi, the communiqué reads: “The Yoruba Council of Elders calls on Mr. President to relieve the present security chiefs, some of whom are already overdue for retirement of their positions and immediately reconfigure the security architecture of the country to reflect the federal character clause in our constitution.
“Most Nigerians have lost confidence in the security chiefs, especially the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, whom the President has publicly acknowledged as disobeying his instructions.
“The President must shed the toga of Baba go-slow and act promptly on this matter to once again inspire the confidence of the Nigerian people in his administration.
“A military which publicly claimed to be neutral where the laws of the land are being violated and innocent citizens mindlessly murdered by armed herdsmen is definitely partisan and can no longer be trusted to protect all Nigerians.”
The YCE advised the president to reconsider the issue of amnesty to repentant Boko Haram terrorists, noting that the timing was inauspicious.
It, however, backed the report of the Governor Nasir El-Rufai-led All Progressives Congress (APC) Committee on Restructuring, saying it was a step in the right direction.
The elders also appealed to the federal government not to dismiss the comments of Bill Gates on the state of economy.
“Any government that spends over 70 per cent of its annual resources on recurrent expenditure cannot develop its people and the country,” said YCE.