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Thursday 22 February 2018



As the Family Writers Press Correspondent in the Middle Belt region of Nigeria, I have unrelentlessly been conducting series of interviews with a couple of political, traditional and religious leaders amongst others from the Tiv ethnic nationality in Benue state. This followed their declaration that the territory of Middle Belt should be carved out of the defunct Nigerian federation and be called TAKURUKU REPUBLIC, a fall out of the menace being visited consistently on the people by the Fulani herdsmen (terrorists). A  crack team of our journalists was dispatched to Gboko, the Headquarters of Tivland to ascertain the true position of things. In our interview with a high profile traditional ruler in the land who pleaded anonymity, was revealing as touched on very sensitive issues. The high Chief in his interview with the Family Writers Press crew led by Mazi Onyebuchi Eze, maintained that no amount of pressure by the agents of the Central government on Benue State government will make her drop the already enacted and promulgated anti-open grazing law in the state as very shamelessly suggested by the Inspector General of the Nigerian Police - Ibrahim Idris Abubakar in Kpotun. The traditional ruler stated that when States in Northern Nigeria such as Zamfara, Kano, Jigawa, Kebbi, Katsina and others introduced Sharia law respectively, nobody including the then Inspector-General of Police, ever demanded the scrapping of the obnoxious law in their domain for the interest of the overall peace of the people. According to him, as powerful and untouchable as Sharia law in Kano and Zamfara States is, so also is the promulgated anti-open grazing law in Benue State and anyone found contravening it, will be dealt with in accordingly.


Family Writers Press: Your Highness, what is your take on the general composition of Nigeria as it is today?

High Chief: Honestly, Nigeria of today has gravely become a source of regret to me personally and the entire Tiv people. This is because our plights today Nigeria is not what our fathers fought to preserve and bequeath to us in the 1960s. Various governments of Nigeria have failed my people in virtually all shades of life, namely: infrastructural development, security and even employment. Our fathers fought to keep Nigeria one between 1967 to 1970 with the hope that Nigeria would be the pride of the African continent. But there is absolutely nothing now to show for it. No body is happy any more with Nigeria considering the enormous evil our people are being visited with, through the culpability and complicity of the Nigerian government for years now.

Family Writers Press: Can you please point out few outstanding differences between the Nigeria of old and that of today?

High Chief: In the 60s for instance, there existed no ethno-religious crises as we presently have it today. There was commensurate peace, love, unity and harmony amongst the people within the Nigerian state. There was this singular preoccupation of how best to make the country great and that was before the military struck in 1966. That regrettably led to a bloody coup d'etat which metamorphosed into Nigeria/Biafra civil war. Nobody ostensibly treasured killing and victimizing one another, in different parts of the country the way it is now. The Fulani herdsmen are brazenly and authoritatively killing the Tivs today. This was the reason why our fathers gallantly fought the way they did to keep Nigeria together. But since the end of Nigeria/Biafra war over forty years back, there is absolutely nothing the Tiv people can show as benefits for their sacrifices for the unity of Nigeria except bloodshed and destruction of their properties perpetrated by the Fulani herdsmen (terrorists) and the military at one time or the other.

Family Writers Press: Your Highness, how can you describe the recent gruesome killings of unarmed civilian farmers in your State by the marauding Fulani herders?

High Chief: The issue of Fulani herdsmen (terrorists) attacks on my people are well beyond description. It's quite indescribable, gentlemen! As I am here with you having this interview, the Fulani herdsmen terrorists are presently occupying many communities in Logo and Guma Local Government Areas of Benue State with the Nigerian security operatives looking helpless in quelling their menace. Many residents of those communities have been killed while multitudes were displaced with no definite time known to any of when they will return back to their homes, presently being occupied by the rampaging Fulani terrorists. It will surprise you to know that a man who fled one of the communities in Logo Local Government Area and took refuge in Makurdi, hired the services of ten (10) armed soldiers from 73 battalion of the Nigerian Army, just to escort him to his village to go and collect some foodstuff for the upkeep of his family who have been made refugees in the State capital. On getting to his community, the heavily armed Fulani herdsmen invaded him and his hired heavily armed soldiers with the request that he be handed over to them to be killed for allegedly supporting the anti-open grazing law in his community. It took the armed soldiers time to plead their way through to avert the Fulani attack on the man. This, the soldiers reasoned, should any misfortune befall the man, it would be far better for them to have committed suicide as none of them would be spared when they get back to barrack. The terrorists not wanting the man to go back without fulfilling their condition, ordered that the honorable gentleman on army escort, would not be allowed to go back from his compound with anything. There is virtually no type of atrocity these Islamic invaders have not committed in Tivland.

Family Writers Press: What do you have to say about the call of the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris Abubakar in Kpotun, who suggested that the dropping of the anti-open grazing law in Benue State, will be the only panacea that would stem the spate of killings by these Fulani herdsmen?

High Chief: The Inspector-General of Police should be ashamed of himself for failing woefully to protect the citizens and the law of the land. He should be ashamed of himself for calling on Benue people to shelve legitimate law that will help curb the vampiric activities of these lawless people who are bent on carrying on with their impunity unchecked. Why doesn't the Inspector-General of Police drop other criminal laws in the society so that armed robbers and other criminally minded persons will allow the so-called peace to reign in Nigeria? Why doesn't he call on the governments within Northern Nigeria to drop Sharia laws in the interest of peace since everyone in those States are not Muslims? Why is Sharia law being enforced in those concerned Northern States with nobody calling for its abrogation? Let the Inspector-General of Police know that the anti-open grazing law in Benue state is as potent as the Sharia law in the Northern States. No amount of threat, pressure, blackmail or arm twisting will make the government of the people of Benue State to jettison this law so as to satisfy the interests of these lawless hoodlums called Fulani herdsmen and their sponsors, who are daily prowling all over the places to commit mayhem. Let them carry on with their lawlessness, very soon they won't have any place any more known as Nigeria to perpetrate their wickedness.

Family Writers Press: We were shocked recently by the news trickling out of about the call by Tiv people for secession from Nigeria, which will be known as Takuruku Republic. What do you make of this?

High Chief: In as much as I do not know much about the said news publication, I think such news could actually be real judging by the fury of Tiv people in Nigeria presently. My people are bitterly complaining about various degrees of injustices being meted out against them within the Nigerian state on successive basis. Amongst the people, are several demands to join Southern Nigeria in any coalition regarding secession. But we are threading cautiously on that for now until such a given time. But I fear such a time when we, the elders may not be able to hold back our young ones.

Family Writers Press: Your Highness, what really is the position of other states within the Middle Belt region as touching the contemplated move for secession by the Tivs?

High Chief: Although the menace of the Fulani herdsmen terrorists are affecting virtually every state in the region but the Tiv tribe is not in a position to speak for others. Most of them are calling for self-defense while others are calling for State Police but the Tiv nation has discovered that self-defense mechanism will not work if the government of the federation is complicit in our security ordeal. That was why some selected intellectuals wrote the letter to the United Nations calling for outright secession of the Middle Belt region out of Nigeria. But my concern on this is the willingness and determination of other tribes within the region to join the secessionist campaign. Most tribes of the Middle Belt are not happy any more in the Nigerian experiment but lack the wisdom on how to go about it as any fruitless secession movement could have dire consequences if improperly handled.

Family Writers Press: Your Highness, could you give us your final words Sir?

High Chief: You mentioned that you are from Family Writers Press International Media Organization, right?

Family Writers Press: Yes Sir!

High Chief: Which country are you people from?

Family Writers Press: Your Highness, our media organisation known as Family Writers Press International, is operating in virtually every country of the world including United Kingdom, United States of America, Cote D'Ivoire, South Africa, Sierra Leone, Mozambique, Nigeria and many others. Our fundamental goal is to give voice to the voiceless through our various electronic media platforms, et cetera.

High Chief: My final words are that if the Nigerian government fails to adequately and promptly address our concerns, sooner than later, there will very definitely seize to exist a country called Nigeria. Many Indigenous ethnic nationalities including Biafrans are embittered by the way Nigeria is being run. They are presently and very seriously too agitating for an Independent nation of theirs and no one can blame them for desiring to break away. If it were now that the last war broke out, the Tivs would not have any other option than to team up with the Biafrans against the Nigerian government.

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