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OPINION: FULANI ATTACKS AND SHAMELESS NORTHERN GOVERNORS   

Photo Credit: REUTERS
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Confucius, the philosopher who lived between 551-479 BCE was credited  as emphatically telling those who are elected by their people to  govern their administrative and political affairs that: “If your  desire is for good, the people will be good.”

erhaps, Confucius and Plato were indeed so passionate about the need  for good governance that they were concerned about the best qualities  and skills that leaders ought to have.    Plato particularly espoused the philosophical thought that  “Philosopher kings” are best suited for leadership role.

The student of Plato, Aristotle took time to build a broad range of  comparisons of governments especially those forms that were espoused  by earlier philosophers.    Indeed Aristotle believed that man by nature is a political animal.

Although Aristotle said all men are by nature political animals but he  was quick to differentiate between human beings with intellects and  irrational animals even as he emphatically highlighted how members of  the human society ought to organize the community of human race to  optimally erect a global community whereby the rule of law would be  uppermost in the affairs of humanity.

A modern day editorial writer in a scholarly politics book wrote the  following on the Aristotelian thought process: “Aristotle identified  various “species” and “sub-species” within the polis. He found  that what distinguishes Man from the other animals is his innate  powers of reason and the faculty of speech, which give him a unique  ability to form social groups and set up communities and  partnerships.”

” Within the community of a Polis (city state), the citizens develop  an organization that  ensures  the security, economic stability, and  justice of the state; not by imposing any form of social contract, but  because it is in their nature to do so”.

“For Aristotle, the different ways of organizing the life of the Polis  exist not so that people can live together (as they do this by their  very nature), but so that they can live well. How well they succeed in  achieving this goal, he observes, depends on the type of government  they choose.” (The Politics Book).    Fast forward to contemporary Nigeria and take analytic view of how the  political class conducts the affairs of state especially in the  current dispensation, it is clear that those parading around as  governors are deficient in leadership skills and qualities that were  generously prescribed by the aforementioned illustrious ancient  philosophers.

Although Nigeria lays claim to practicing constitutional democracy but  the democratic institutions are undermined deliberately by members of  the political class to such a dysfunctional level that sane persons  whose places of habitation are in the advanced civilisations often  wonder why such a potentially great nation state like Nigeria has been  sabotaged to a level that life in it has become so meaningless,  insecured, short and brutish almost to a level that Thomas Hobbes  talked about in his dreaded STATE OF NATURE.

Worst still, the specie of persons holding offices as governors of the  Northern States  have shown that they absolutely care less about the  provisions of the constitution and have devoted their times to pursue  primordial ethno-religious sentiments.

Apart from the fact that these Northern governors have failed to  provide good governance to their people, their roles in the ongoing  unwarranted massacre of farmers by armed Fulani terrorists have left  right thinking Nigerians wondering what their agenda is. Again, the  deliberate failure of all the security forces to apprehend and  prosecute to a logical conclusion all the armed Fulani terrorists and  their sponsors has confounded all rational minds. The question being  asked is if the current President Muhammadu Buhari’s dministration has  no pan-Nigerian agenda which would have necessitated a quick win  mechanisms to eradicate the rapidly expanding genocides by armed  Fulani terrorists. Muhammadu Buhari is Fulani so are most heads of  Nigeria’s security institutions appointed by Muhammadu Buhari’s  administration.

Few days back, the Northern governors met in Kaduna together with the  traditional rulers and the Chief of Army Staff in what they claimed  was because of the tumultuous security instability in Northern region.

But whilst presenting their communiqué, these Northern governors  displayed the most ludicrous approach towards ending the seemingly  unending security threats in the North posed by the rampaging Fulani  marauders.

Their spokesman spoke from both sides of his mouth and made  unbelievable claim that the armed Fulani marauders wrecking havoc in  all sorts of communities around the nation are foreigners from Niger,  Chad and Mali.

But few days after they rose from this unholy meeting, the Nigerian  Police Force that has so far failed to stop the mass killings by these  armed Fulani herdsmen paraded 17 suspected armed Fulani herdsmen  responsible for the gruesome killings of mainly Southern Kaduna  Christians.

It turned out that the Northern governors lied because these suspected  killers are Nigerians of Fulani extraction.

But the Northern Governor’s Forum, NGF, had prior to this arrest  said it has resolved to work with relevant stakeholders to secure  Nigeria’s borders and register Fulani immigrants entering into the  country to rear cattle.

The Chairman of the Forum, Kashim Shettima of Borno, disclosed this to  journalists at the end of the forum’s meeting in Kaduna.

According to him, the governors observed that most of the herdsmen  involved in issues of insecurity are immigrants from Senegal and Mali.

“We also mapped out new strategies that would be used by the local  Fulani herdsmen to rear their cattle without having to move across the  country,” he said.

The Police has immediately put a big lie to this infantile claim of  Northern governors going by the disclosure that the suspects arrested  for the heinous attacks of Southern Kaduna people are Nigerian Fulani.

The Police at Force headquarters paraded 17 suspects arrested in  connection with the violence in Kafanchan and environs in Southern  Kaduna which has claimed the lives of many persons and led to  destruction of property.

The 17 suspects according to the Force Public relations Officer, CSP  Jimoh Moshood were arrested for inciting public disturbance,  disturbance of public peace, causing mischief by fire, culpable  homicide, theft and unlawful possession of prohibited firearms.

Explaining how the suspects were arrested, CSP Moshood said,  “Concerned by the recent unfortunate sectarian crisis in Kafanchan  and neighbouring communities in Kaduna state where so many lives were  lost and properties worth millions of naira destroyed, and the need to  put a final stop to the crisis, the Inspector General of Police, IGP  Ibrahim Idris constituted a Joint Tactical Operations Squad.

“The Squad known as Operation Harmony comprised the Police Mobile  Squad, Counter Terrorism Unit, Special Anti-Robbery Squad,  Intelligence Response Team, SIB, Explosive Ordinance Department, IGP  Monitoring Unit, Police K9 (Sniffer Dog Section), Police Air Wing and  Police Medical Team with headquarters in Kafanchan.

“The Operation recorded remarkable achievements in tackling the  crisis and preventing further disturbance of public peace across  Southern Kaduna. Seventeen (17) suspects were arrested in the act and  caches of arms and ammunition were recovered from them.

The suspects made up of both Fulani herdsmen and Natives of Southern  Kaduna include Nelson Paul, the arms supplier to the suspects; Bulus  Jatau, Magaji Shuaibu, Danlami Yakubu, Idris Bello, Danjuma Barde,  Goma Adamu, Samuel Joshua, and Abdulkareem Abdul. Others are Haruna  Ilyasu, Hassan Idris, Adamu Haruna, Adamu Umar, Suleiman Saleh,  Abubakar Muhammadu, and Muhammadu Jori.

The Force PRO gave a breakdown of arms and ammunition recovered from  the suspects saying, “A total number of 29 assorted firearms and  ammunition were recovered from their possession.    The Police had earlier arrested armed Fulani herdsmen in Enugu accused  of leading the invasion of some communities in Enugu state and the  killing of scores of Nigerians.

Earlier this year, the Army in Abuja reportedly paraded some Nigerians  armed Fulani herdsmen but it is alleged that these suspects were  secretly released by the hierarchy of the Army.

Governments at every level must show political will to tackle these  killings and the Judiciary must be up and doing to ensure that these  suspected killers are punished. The respective justice ministries must  wake up and pursue the prosecution of all suspected armed Fulani  terrorists.

Written by Emmanuel Onwubiko, Head of Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria.