I have known Fulani herdsmen since childhood and when I was a kid I do enjoy seeing them; they go with cows and we come out cheering or playfully stoning the last flock or see them when they come out to buy bread or drink locally brewed “kai-kai”. My mother would warn me against stoning because she had already told me they often go with charms for protection. That is their normal way of protecting their selves against hostile animals and other things.
My comrade Oscar Lee had once posited that Fulani herdsmen turn to cows via magic or charm when grazing in a dangerous bush. There was actually no need for” arm” concern because there are no cow rustlers in Biafra land; I have never heard of cow rustling and even if it has happened; it has only happened on a low key. My mother used to own a shop they often come and buy beer or hot drink; after each drink, they stand and click their whips in a training-like session. We often hear of how they destroyed one farm land or another and when we tell them; they always promise never to go there or blame their inability to control their cows. There was mutual respect and there was fear as strangers; they seemed to be conscious of the fact that we also survive through farming as much as they survive through animal rearing. Destroying our farm for their cows to live is infringement and attack or threat to our existence.
I have never seen hostile Fulani herdsmen until recently and when Buhari became the president of Nigeria; Fulani menace surged and it became a massaged terrorism. They do nothing but the same work as Boko Haram though the difference remains that they don’t bomb us. They massacre us and kill in hundreds; leave us in fear and yet destroy our farms. They have been armed and nothing can be done about it. They walk like the owners of Nigeria and neither has Buhari warned or taken their atrocities serious. Hence Fulani herdsmen are the perpetrators; they have done nothing and that is why Agatu massacre was never condemned until Fayose fought gallantly. Though the condemnation is to fulfill all righteousness; there is a siege already laid; I have asked myself why Fulani herdsmen rose like a phoenix just minutes after Buhari was confirmed the president of Nigeria. Does it mean other presidents have been keeping them in bondage?- do they now feel like the owners of Nigeria?- or did Buhari urge them to go on with Usman Danfodio legacies?
There are questions and there should be answers. I have failed to comprehend how a common herder got armed and got trained on how to use AK47. Who bought those guns and for what purpose? If the gun is to chase or kill cattle rustlers; are herdsmen now security men or are cattle rustlers seen in this old eastern region? There is no how I can be convinced otherwise when I say that Fulani herdsmen are for the special purpose of Islamization and subjugation. There is great concern to be cautious of them before you will be silenced as Victor Umeh was silenced for condemning their activities. As these Fulani herdsmen are going about wrecking havoc; nothing has been done about it. When over five hundred people were killed in Agutu; to my greatest surprise; no single herdsman was arrested and neither was a probe initiated. No account or accusation was made or laid by the DSS and even in other places; it has been same case. Fulani herdsmen are beyond the law and cannot be touched or questioned and that is how it will remain as long as they foster the plan of Buhari.
|Fulani herdsmen with AK47|
The trending plan today is to accuse IPOB of kidnapping them and then DSS will increase their genocide rate on Biafra. The irresponsibility or the excess of Buhari’s security men to answer questions or curb Fulani terrorism has resulted to what I will describe as self defense. People cannot be dying every day and you expect them to keep dying because you want them to die. They will eventually stand and fight to live because life is precious even to a mad man or a new born baby that knows nothing. In Agatu, victims are fighting back the way they can; in Agwu people of the ravaged community are fighting to their best and now in Umuahia. Five Fulani herdsmen were reportedly attacked by strangers or residents in self defense or proactive measure to save the community from bloodbath or reprisal as the case may be and the Nigerian security triggered alarm, red light is blinking right now while in Agatu, Agwu and other places hundreds were killed, raped and kidnapped by Fulani herdsmen; no alarm was raised and no red light blinked. The DSS has quickly mentioned IPOB as behind the kidnap of the five Fulani herdsmen reported missing.
It is a sharp one to implicate IPOB so as to have reason for their cold genocide on Biafra. The Nigerian government have tried very much to demonize IPOB; it started from being tagged a terrorist organization to militant when vessel was hijacked; they quickly ran and accused IPOB of hijacking the vessel. Time was kind enough to disclose that IPOB has no hand in the hijack and yet IPOB received no apology. There have been one accusation or another just to undermine the peaceful and lawful nature of IPOB but it has failed; there is no need to worry as this latest move to tag IPOB kidnappers organization will fell. The sharp concern from the security men and the federal government concerning the kidnap of these Fulani herdsmen calls for concern. If 500 Agatu people could not attract condemnation from the presidency while the kidnap of the perpetrators of genocide, kidnap, rape, destruction of farms and murderers could attract this sharp response; then is fair to ask; who are Fulani herdsmen working for?
The reaction of the security men shows the president is deeply angered by the kidnap of his foot soldiers. The move by DSS to frame IPOB as kidnappers so as to get the ground or justify their unlawful incarceration, murder and forced disappearance of Biafrans is a futile effort. IPOB is a peaceful people of Biafra and it becomes funny when you accuse a nation of kidnapping five worthless and inconsequential figures. IPOB remains peaceful and when the time for arm struggle comes up; there won’t be need to accuse IPOB of doing anything because we shall do so openly. DSS should know that accusing IPOB of kidnapping five Fulani herdsmen is a big insult to the Biafra nation. Should we kidnap, we shall start from the President to the governors and then political class who are guilty of destruction and genocide.
Finally, it is important to remind the government of Nigeria the need to respect and maintain a good diplomatic tie with Biafra nation. The act of forcing and trying to demonize a peaceful people to be bad is a plan that will only backfire. IPOB has chosen to peacefully restore Biafra; even when we were massacred in Onitsha, Aba, Igweocha, Enugu etc, we stayed strong and endured the urge for reprisal. If we can still remain peaceful despite everything done so far; there is need to commend IPOB than go on imposing what IPOB cannot be on IPOB. The DSS should know that their failure to contain or contend Fulani onslaught is responsible for the self defense strangers or community residents may activate. As IPOB was accused of kidnapping Fulani herdsmen; IPOB should also be accused of the reprisal in Agutu and accused of the kidnap of a top military commander. IPOB should be accused of all the kidnapping going on in Nigeria to show a clear frustration of Nigerian government. IPOB will remain peaceful and hence IPOB has found out that peace frustrates FG, they will continue to remain peaceful.
Written by Ifeanyi Chijioke
Published by Chinwe Korie