By Peter Shande
We have, not surprisingly, been inundated with nefarious activities of the Fulani herdsmen since the INEC announced APC as the party that ostensibly won the 2023 Presidential Elections.
While Bola Ahmed Tinubu has been strutting around like an ugly peacock, dishing out promises even beyond his time on the campaign trail and trying to assuage feelings that such obvious rigging is naturally expected to upset, the herdsmen resume here in the earnest.
These armed herdsmen are Fulani from the neighboring states of Niger, Mali, Chad, Libya, Guinea, etc. They have, acting in concert with indigenous Fulani, determined that Nigeria was going to be their final stop, as according to them God, or more correctly, Allah has given them this expanse of real estate as a homeland – Nigeria. They have never been tired of telling the world since then about that bout of hallucination.
We have since 2014 lost over 10,000 souls in Benue, with over 2 million displaced and living in IDP camps. The Fulani led Federal government couldn’t be bothered as they claim absolute ownership over the land and the people of Benue are seen as interlopers to be dealt with as Fulani controlled instruments of coercion deem fit.
Although the rate of these attacks reduced remarkably, the ante has been raised since the APC, (which prefers to rule Nigeria as if Christian only exists as useful idiots in a catalog of slaves) through INEC announced Tinubu, a Muslim backed by Shettima, his vice also a Muslim, as those to oversee the wellbeing of Nigeria.
Predictably, the spate of attacks have escalated. The Fulani herdsmen have taken the announcement of APC as election winners as meaning acquiescence to the anachronistic open grazing practice. Was the election in any way a referendum to that effect? Does this in any way negate our right to make laws for the safeguard of our society and people of Benue? Such selfish and awkward, backward thinking!
In Kwande Local Government at Moon clan, Mbadura, Mkomon and Yaav areas, 8 people were shot dead, while scores were hacked to death. Gwer West reported the loss of a commander of the Benue State Community Volunteer Guards and several others. Udei in Guma Local Government area had its turn a day after and more than 7 persons are reported killed. The count goes on as the authorities look on seemingly unconcerned as usual.
In the twilight of their life here the Fulani herdsmen are bent on making a mark by resorting to more obnoxious animal behavior, thinking it might be what will ensure their victory. To us in Benue civil and religious freedom, progress, and preservation of civil rights are inextricably linked with our economic freedom. We are arable farmers. We cannot therefore be cowed by the stupid mind control games from these incompetent assholes, and empty balloons without their opinion, who are at best, reality denying grotesqueries.
Our former Nigerian leader, Olusegun Obasanjo, appealed in very temperate language for caution and rectification of a corrupted process. He concluded: “…please don’t let anybody say to you that it does not matter or it is the problem of INEC. On no account should you be seen as part of the collusion or compromise.” The respected statesman can see there is no longer any room for flippancy and uncalled for belligerence, but sober reflection and also not perchance for dwelling on decisions obtained with wiles, lies, and baseness of subterfuge if we are to salvage our Nigeria. Sadly, he got insulted roundly by these vermin.
WE can observe the Fulani herdsmen forge on in unsteady steps on the brink of their graves hardly bothering to arrest the torrents of their maledictions. We also await to eventually confront head-on this Industrial scale human disaster, having proven over time that we have got no patience for being messed around.
For the local movement here that is probably run by Psycho Brothers for Christ, they remain objects of pity as they will hardly be considered when there comes a time for sharing the “spoils”. A people more mentally balanced would have seen that from the machinations that arose after the Biafran war. But then, history has been yanked out of our school curriculum; and therefore there goes the sense of history.
Mike Tyson, the heavyweight boxer once said, “Everyone has a plan until they get hit in the face”. And hit in the face they will be. For we see no plan but an ordinate desire to acquire wealth by all means. The pity is that while they are suspicious of the poor Tiv peasants, they are so lenient to the atrocities or vices of Fulani herdsmen, Boko Haram operatives, bandits and suchlike.
As it is now, there is both unspeakable cruelty and slow economic decomposition at the instance of this oligarchy, expressed in the form of the steady devaluation of our lives. We can see greed has taken over here since, but long before it did, it was surpassed in popularity and maliciousness by envy. Where there once was optimism there is now only pessimism
Governor Samuel Ortom, even if he has just a day to go, must not allow this combined hatred of the flesh with coercive utopianism result into a pernicious ideology that seeks to make our ordinary people feel guilty just for being alive.
The former ArchBishop of Paris, Cardinal Lustiger once said:
“A rich nation that loses its soul is a nation of the dead a sumptuous culture that loses its soul is dead, a culture that has lost its reasons for living, economic or social systems that, in practice, contradict the goals they profess, can only give birth to nothingness or destruction”.
We may shortly be faced internally with a regime inspired by a messianic and therefore totalitarian creed… be it Communism, Islam, Nazism, or any other ism- which has a powerful, unavoidable tendency towards the forcible establishment of a system which has no place for those unwilling to worship the new idol.
We must be strong to save ourselves from descent into slavery. Weakness in this situation is nothing less than a crime, when it is weakness that paralyzes the imagination.
If Gyuse Doki could muster those who stood firm and defeated our enemies in 1804. Mr Governor, you can lead us to liberty and vanquish coercion; shortages and want have to be replaced by economic growth, wealth generation and self-reliance in 2023. In God we have always trusted!