The Nigerian Christian Pilgrim Commission (NCPC) has said bandits should be the ones advocating for amnesty themselves instead of law-abiding citizens doing so on their behalf.
Yakubu Pam, Executive Secretary of NCPC, said this to journalists in Kaduna State on Saturday, after paying a condolence visit to Samuel Salifu, a former secretary-general of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), over the death of his wife.
Ahmed Gumi, a prominent Islamic cleric, and former President Olusegun Obasanjo had recently asked the Federal Government to rehabilitate bandits who are willing to surrender.
But Pam insisted that bandits should be the ones asking for amnesty if they have really repented from their criminal actions.
He said: “Those (bandits) who want amnesty should come out and show genuine repentance. Those who realised their mistake and feel remorseful about their actions should come out and seek for forgiveness, not the other way round.
“We should not be the ones advocating for amnesty for people who have wronged society. Let them come by themselves and ask for forgiveness.
“If they show up and the government, together with Nigerians, assess their request for forgiveness, then we can arrive at a decision.”
The NCPC Executive Secretary also called on the government at all levels to take practical steps to resolve the security challenges in the country and engage citizens in finding solutions.
He said: “We are appealing to the federal and state governments, as well as leaders at the grassroots, especially in the north, to stop assurance on media and take practical steps whereby citizens will be engaged in solving the problem of insecurity.
“Government must engage citizens in finding solutions to the problems. That is the only way we can come out of the problem.
“When we have information about who these bad people are, I think Nigeria will survive. We should be sincere in exposing the criminals; even if it is my son, let him face the wrath of the law.”