Nigerians began the New Year 2018 on a sour, sad note last week with widespread killings of innocent citizens.
In Benue State for instance, no fewer than 40 Nigerians were mowed down in cold blood by the notorious Fulani herdsmen. Simultaneously in Rivers State about 15 innocent citizens were killed by gunmen on rampage. The victims were said to be returning to their respective abodes after crossover night vigil early January 1.
Kwara State was not left out in the pogrom where some citizens were massacred last week. The list is endless. For a country like Nigeria to start the New Year with mindless killings of its citizens especially at the beginning of the New Year calls for serious concern.
Series of comments have continued to trail these killings; in his own remarks, Transportation Minister, Rotimi Amaechi blamed the carnage in Rivers State on the state governor Nyesom Wike for not doing enough to protect the state against such attacks. In his typical virulent posture, Wike lambasted Amaechi asking how was it possible for a sitting governor to open his eyes and watch the citizens rail-roaded to their early graves.
In Kwara State, it was between the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and some Muslims where CAN accused the Muslim faithful of deliberately killing its faithful on the New Year’s day, a charge which was vehemently denied by the Muslims.
In southern Kaduna, the madness was equally replicated by the murderous Fulani herdsmen. They were equally protesting the anti-grazing law promulgated by some states especially in Benue and Ekiti. They were quoted as saying they would not obey the law come what may. That is the main reason they were on rampage – mad people one would say.
The germane question that readily comes to mind is where does the Federal Government stand on this pogrom which has been a festering sore to the nation.
President Muhammadu Buhari, himself a Fulani, had been variously accused of willfully supporting the Fulani herdsmen in their dastardly escapade throughout the country. Besides condemning the killings on the pages of newspapers, the Federal Government and the National Assembly have not come out with a clear-cut long-term remedy by way of making strong laws to tackle this cankerworm. All we hear is “Oh government is making sure that perpetrators would be brought to book” and yet the carnage persists with much ferocity. Hitherto, not a single culprit of this mind-boggling murder had been apprehended not to talk of committing them to prison.
On this particular incident, we can safely say President Buhari is presiding over the wanton killings of the citizens. He had held several meetings with security agencies which we safely refer to as presidential rabble-rousing which had overtime become a nullity. The latest was his meeting with the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Ibrahim Idris after which Idris shamelessly referred to as a communal clash in Benue State. We ask again who was fighting who? Are they deliberately killing themselves? Idris should tell it to the marines. It is falsity of the highest grade. It is glaringly incontrovertible that this government has failed abysmally.
However, the government could still mend fences with undisputedly battered citizenry over this issue of Fulani herdsmen and other gunmen across the country. First, the Miyetti Allah, the arrowhead of Fulani herdsmen should be straightaway apprehended and properly grilled on the activities of the herdsmen. The herdsmen should be made to face the full wrath of the law. The security agencies – Army, Police, Civil Defence Corps and others should not compromise again on the issue of mass killings anymore. This government has lost the confidence the citizens have in them because of this singular but volatile issue of security whereby certain sects like Fulani herdsmen, Baddo cultists and other blood-sucking criminal outfits operate undeterred and are let loose daily.