In one in every of his smallest books Professor Chinua Achebe of the blessed reminiscences made very startling claims that Nigeria has an “Igbo” drawback.
Within the “THE TROUBLE WITH NIGERIA”, launched in 1983 and reprinted in 1985, the globally revered scholar behind the favored novel referred to as “Issues crumble”, had written thus: “ A distinguished political scientist from a “minority” space of the south pronounced some years in the past that Nigeria has an Igbo drawback. Each ethnic group is after all one thing of an issue for Nigeria’s simple achievement of cohesive nation- hood.”
“However the discovered professor little doubt noticed the Igbo as a selected irritant, a particular thorn within the flesh of the Nigerian body-politic.”
“Nigerians of all ethnic teams will most likely obtain consensus on no different matter than their widespread resentment of the Igbo. They might all describe them as aggressive, boastful and clannish. Most would add greedy and grasping (though the efficiency of the Yoruba because the finish of the Civil conflict has tended to place the prize for greed in some doubt”.
“Trendy Nigerian historical past has been marked by sporadic eruptions of anti-Igbo feeling of kind of severe import; but it surely was not till 1966-7 when it swept via Northern Nigeria like “a flood of a lethal hate” that the Igbo first questioned the idea of Nigeria which that they had embraced with a lot better fervour than the Yoruba or the Hausa/Fulani.”
“ The Civil Conflict gave Nigeria an ideal and bonafide excuse to forged the Igbo within the position of treasonable felon, a wrecker of the nation. However thank Gowon’s moderating affect overt vengeance was not visited on them when their secessionist State of Biafra was defeated in January 1970. However there have been hard-liners in Gowon’s cupboard who needed their pound of flesh, probably the most highly effective amongst them being Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Federal Commissioner for Finance. Below his steering a banking coverage was advanced which nullified any checking account which has been operated through the civil conflict. This has fast results of pauperizing the Igbo center class and incomes a revenue of 4 million for the Federal Authorities Treasury”.
Professor Achebe wrote additional thus: “The Indigenization Decree which adopted quickly afterwards accomplished the routing of the Igbo from the commanding heights of the Nigerian economic system, to everybody’s obvious satisfaction.”
“The origin of the nationwide resentment of the Igbo is as previous as Nigeria and fairly as difficult. However it may be summarized thus: the Igbo tradition being receptive to vary, individualistic and extremely aggressive, gave the Igbo man an unquestioned benefit over his compatriots in securing credentials for development in Nigerian colonial society.”
“In contrast to the Hausa/Fulani he was unhindered by conventional hierarchies. This sort of creature, fearing no man, was custom- made to understand the alternatives, equivalent to they had been, of the white man’s dispensation. And the Igbo did so with each fingers. Though the Yoruba had an enormous historic and geographical head-start the Igbo worn out their handicap in a single unbelievable burst of power within the twenty years between 1930 and 1950.”
“Had the Igbo been a minor ethnic group of some hundred thousand, their menace might need been simply and quietly contained. However they ran of their thousands and thousands! Like J.P. Clark’s high quality picture of “ants submitting out of the wooden” the Igbo moved out of their forest residence, scattered and nearly seized the ground.”
That was the classic Professor Chinua Achebe whose monumental physique of literature has moulded thousands and thousands of youthful students.
I believe one factor that was lacking in that small however mighty e book THE TROUBLE WITH NIGERIA written by Professor Chinua Achebe is the absence of any type of reconstruction and rehabilitation of the infrastructures of the previous Japanese area destroyed by the 30 Months civil conflict by the then Federal forces that Gowon and his successors fill date didn’t rebuild in contrast to what obtained after the World Wars when the battered infrastructures and economic system of Germany and far of Europe was reconstructed and rebuilt via The Marshall plan (formally the European Restoration Programme, ERP) which was an American initiative handed in 1948 for overseas support to Western Europe. The USA transferred over $12 billion (equal of billion in 2019) in financial restoration programme to Western European economies after the tip of the World Conflict 11. So the Igbo drawback continues to be unresolved. Nonetheless, there’s a Fulani drawback in Nigeria of right this moment and the sooner we settle for this existential actuality and attend to it the higher.
Steven Kefas a social media activist consider that there’s a Fulani drawback in Nigeria.
He wrote as follows: “Final yr out of curiosity I visited each Katsina and Zamfara states in my quest for information in regards to the incessant killings happening there. After interacting with locals and a few victims I came upon that the aggressors within the two states are armed Fulani militias whereas the victims are largely Muslims of Hausa extraction. This invariably implies that the killings happening within the two neighbouring states will not be non secular however racial and all in regards to the Fulani hegemony over their Hausa hosts.The native Hausa folks of Northern Nigeria are additionally victims of those mass killings happening there, satirically they hardly converse out for causes greatest recognized to them.I’m glad that right this moment some Hausas have seen cause to talk out in opposition to the atrocities of the Fulanis in Northern Nigeria and by extension all the nation.
Salient questions begging for solutions are;
Who’s arming the Fulani militias and to what achieve?
Why are Northern Governors giving them cash and typically logistics within the guise of compensation? Compensation for what precisely?
Can any group take up arms and maintain the nation to ransom with out being crushed by the navy? Why are the Fulani militias being pampered as an alternative of being crushed by our navy may? Are the militias higher geared up and educated then our navy?
It’s time for Nigerians irrespective of faith or tribe to unite and converse with one voice in opposition to the atrocities of those Janjaweeds and their sponsors.
It’s time for the Hausas of Northern Nigeria who’ve suffered significantly within the fingers of those bloodsucking criminals get up and take their destinies of their fingers simply because the Yorubas and others are doing in the intervening time.
Might God Almighty ship us and produce an finish to the calamitous actions of those Janjaweeds.Amen.”
As identified by the activist Steven Kefas, the North is contending with the standard Fulani drawback and to be Candid, no one is stereotyping the Fulani ethnicity. The Fulani drawback stems from the truth that there are two existential attributes related to the Fulani ethnicity in Nigeria. The existential attributes are that there are two sorts of Fulani in Nigeria which as I got here to understand it as a baby in Northern Nigeria of the early 80’s are the realities of the 2 sub- teams of Fulani generally recognized in Hausa language as Fulani Daji (Fulani who’re nomadic and are recognized to maneuver about within the bush and there’s the opposite sub-set referred to as Fulani Gida or Fulani that stay contained in the townships like each different Nigerian. FOR occasion, Atiku Abubakar Nigeria’s former Vice President is Fulani gida. President Muhammadu Buhari is city Fulani. All these cupboard ministers-: that of FCT, Training, Finance and plenty of others holding high rated nationwide places of work beneath the federal government of President Muhammadu Buhari are FULANI GIDA.
From each indication, a lot of the instances of kidnapping, cattle rustling and the alleged invasion of farms and forest reserves are carried out by the sub-set of Fulani who stay within the bush and who’ve but to embrace modernity equivalent to ranching of their cows and settling down with their beautiful households in homes within the rural and concrete areas of Nigeria. The opposite drawback is that these herders who’re nomadic are stated to be caring for livestock and cattle belonging to the Fulani elites who’re amongst the Urbanised Fulani.
One of many factions of the umbrella group of Fulani herdsmen referred to as Miyetti Allah clearly demonstrated the truth that we as a contemporary Federation must sort out the Fulani drawback that steers us all within the face. As I stated once more, it’s not about stereotyping any ethnicity however about adopting pragmatic method to resolve an identifiable drawback. I don’t agree with Sultan of Sokoto or Bishop Mathew Hassan Kukah of Sokoto Diocese of the Roman Catholic church who assume any try to speak in regards to the prevalent involvement of Fulani herdsmen in violent crime quantities to stereotyping the Fulani Ethnicity. Removed from it. We have to establish an issue in order to resolve it. Many of the victims of kidnappings freed typically informed the media that their abductors spoke Fulfude which is the native dialect of Fulani. That is why there’s the necessity to remedy this rising drawback with out essentially criminalizing Fulani Ethnicity.
I’ll very shortly return to the interview granted by the factional chief of Miyetti Allah through which a few of his phrases depicts these vanity that I believe constituted the Fulani drawback that we have to remedy going ahead.
However first, let me quote a press release ‘from a Fulani elite who clearly painted the image of a disaster of identification amongst the Fulani ethnicity that we ought to resolve.
Adamu Garba, a former presidential aspirant has reacted to the continued rift between Sunday Igboho, his supporters and the Fulani residing in Igbangan, Oyo State.
A revered on-line media in Nigeria, DAILY POST had reported that the Yoruba activist, Sunday Igboho, made actual his risk to expel the Fulani from Igangan in Oyo State.
Igboho disclosed that he acted on the request of conventional rulers.
Reacting, Garba in a tweet through his Twitter account on Monday, stated although he’s a Fulani man, he was completely in opposition to the concept of permitting cows to roam the streets in 2021.
He additional revealed that by regulation, land can solely be used via hire or buy, including that authorities ought to step ahead and resolve the dispute.
“I’m a Fulani man, but it surely really doesn’t make sense for cows to be roaming the streets in 2021. Cows must be ranched on a land acquired or rented by the ranchers. Additionally, by regulation land can solely be used via hire or buy.
“I consider, to reconcile the raging herders disaster is to open correct communication the place every is aware of the legal guidelines of the land. All lands in Nigeria, together with forests belongs to some entity, FG, SGs, LGs, Firm’s or people. Thus no land can be utilized with out correct authorization.
“The issue of the Fulani herders is a betrayal from the town Fulanis, who determined, after shifting to cities, buying wealth & energy, however failed to hold the village brothers alongside, leaving them in a determined state of affairs.
“I might advise that the wealthy Fulanis ought to come collectively and purchase ranching lands whereas authorities step ahead and dissolve this dispute.
“No state energy can provide land to anybody the place the land is been recognized with homeowners for generations, with out buying or renting.
“Lastly, lack of correct communication to the herders in understanding the regulation of land use, by bringing the encompassing communities onboard isn’t adequate.
“It may well as nicely be a breeding floor for conflicts and a really ripe state of affairs for civil conflict. This should nevertheless be averted AT ALL COST,” he stated.
This assertion confirms the existence of a Fulani drawback in Nigeria. Then the MIYETTI ALLAH official Bello Bodejo bragged that Fulani herdsmen don’t want the permission of land homeowners earlier than grazing their cows. Simply earlier than the President Muhammadu Buhari reportedly waded into the disaster between MIYETTI and Ondo state governor, the MIYETTI ALLAH official depicted these sentiments that go to point out the crucial of accepting that there’s a Fulani drawback after which Nigeria finds a method out so all Ethnic teams can have a way of belonging and concord.
To buttress the aforementioned factors, in 2016 the newspapers reported that the Kaduna State Governor Mallam Nasir El-Rufai had stated his authorities has traced some violent, aggrieved Fulani to their international locations and paid them to cease the killings of Southern Kaduna natives and the destruction of their communities saying that the renewed violence is carried out by bandits.
El-Rufai made this recognized whereas fielding questions from some choose Journalists in his workplace in Kaduna.
He stated: “For southern Kaduna, we didn’t perceive what was happening and we determined to arrange a committee beneath Gen. Martin Luther Agwai (rtd) to search out out what was happening there. What was established was that the foundation of the issue has a historical past ranging from the 2011 submit election violence. “Fulani herdsmen from throughout Africa convey their cattle down in direction of Center Belt and Southern Nigeria. The second the rains begins round March, April, they begin shifting them up to return to their varied communities and international locations. “Sadly, it was after they had been shifting up with their cattle throughout Southern Kaduna that the elections of 2011 happened and the disaster trapped a few of them. “A few of them had been from Niger, Cameroon, Chad, Mali and Senegal. Fulanis are in 14 African international locations and so they traverse this nation with the cattle.
“So many of those folks had been killed, cattle misplaced and so they organised themselves and got here again to revenge. “So loads of what was taking place in Southern Kaduna was really from outdoors Nigeria. We received a touch that the late Governor Patrick Yakowa received this info and he despatched somebody to go spherical a few of these Fulani communities, however after all after he died, the entire thing stopped. That’s what we inherited. However the Agwai committee established that.
“We took sure steps. We received a gaggle of those that had been going spherical making an attempt to hint a few of these folks in Cameroon, Niger republic and so forth to inform them that there’s a new governor who’s Fulani like them and has no drawback paying compensations for lives misplaced and he’s begging them to cease killing. “In many of the communities, as soon as that enchantment was made to them, they stated they’ve forgiven. There are one or two that requested for financial compensation. They stated they’ve forgiven the loss of life of human beings, however need compensation for cattle. We stated no drawback, and we paid some.”
Conclusively, within the Vanguard report of December third 2016, Elrufai stated: “As not too long ago as two weeks in the past, the workforce went to Niger republic to attend one Fulani gathering that they maintain yearly with a message from me.”
About the identical interval, the Senator representing Southern Kaduna Senator Danjuma Tella Laah accused the Kaduna State Governor of sponsoring Fulani herdsmen to assault and kill Southern Kaduna Christians.
The crises in Ondo State relating to unlawful occupation of the forest reserves by Fulani herdsmen which culminated in a gathering of South West governors additionally present that many of the criminals perpetrating crimes of kidnappings and killings within the area are FULANI herdsmen.
In Delta State, armed Fulani herdsmen killed a Top notch conventional ruler. In Enugu, a number of communities had been attacked by armed Fulani herdsmen. In Abia and Imo state’s, armed Fulani herdsmen have attacked many communities. In Benue State armed Fulani herdsmen have attacked many communities and killed many. In Plateau state, in addition to Taraba and Adamawa there have been instances of assaults by armed Fulani simply as Fulani settlements got here beneath assaults.
Actually, Nigeria has a Fulani drawback which has been made worst by the dangerous insurance policies of the President Muhammadu Buhari led administration that up to now continued to defend Fulani herdsmen and haven’t prosecuted any of the suspected armed Fulani herdsmen. Don’t quote me fallacious, there are thousands and thousands of excellent Fulani who will not be criminals. Nonetheless, from obtainable empirical proof, too most of the armed Fulani herdsmen are into one type of crime or the opposite together with stealing cows from different Fulani herdsmen.
It’s uncertain if the present administration that performs out favouritism in direction of the Fulani Trigger will muster sufficient political will to successfully resolve the Fulani drawback in Nigeria. Can we discover out why regardless of the releases of billions of Naira to run the Academic company for mass literacy of Fulani nomads, not a lot features have come from utilizing public fund to specifically empower the nomadic Fulani? If the efforts of the Academic empowerment of the FULANI DAJI via the Federal ministry of Training had been nicely mobilized and transparently applied, I believe by now, over 50 % of the nomadic Fulani would have embraced fashionable method of ranching their cattle so there shall be no situation on the invasion of farms or illegally occupying forests and farm lands. In Southern Kaduna, there are allegations that armed Fulani herdsmen have occupied Christian communities and have chased away the actual homeowners who at the moment are in IDPS.
This was how Ondo and Fulani herdsmen resolved the Fulani conundrum-: “Following the Government Order of the Governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu Aketi SAN, to the Fulani Herdsmen illegally occupying the State Forest Reserves to vacate inside seven days With impact from Monday 18″ January, 2021, the Nigeria Governors’ Discussion board led by its Chairman, Dr. Kayode Fayemi met with the management of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Affiliation of Nigeria (MACBAN), safety businesses and different stakeholders on twenty fifth January, 2021 on the Worldwide Centre for Tradition and Occasions (DOME), Alagbaka, Akure, Ondo State to search out lasting options to the incessant killings, kidnapping and crises between herdsmen and farmers within the Southwest geo-political zone of the nation.
Assembly mentioned vigorously and resolved that:
The safety and welfare of the folks of Nigeria is the first objective of Authorities as enshrined within the 1999 structure of Nigeria as amended.
The stakeholders are dedicated to the unity and indivisibility of Nigeria.
Insecurity is a nationwide problem and never peculiar to any tribe or area however have to be addressed by the cooperation of all.
The order of the Ondo State Governor was misconstrued and misrepresented by a bit of the media. He solely ordered these occupying the Forest Reserves in Ondo State illegally to stop.
Criminals must be apprehended and punished, regardless of their origin, class or standing.
Safety businesses have been making an attempt to stem the tide of criminality within the nation however should step up their efforts within the combat.
There’s the necessity to construct partnership for peace and safety with MACBAN and collectively wage conflict in opposition to criminality.
Nobody had despatched anybody away from any state or area however all fingers have to be on deck to combat criminality.
MACBAN is a peace loving, regulation abiding group which doesn’t harbour or condone criminals and agreed that:
(i) Evening grazing must be banned henceforth
(ii) Below age herding is Inimical to safety and therefore be banned
(iii) Occupation of State Forest Reserves illegally is condemned.
MACBAN additionally suffers insecurity and kidnapping and thus need peaceable coexistence.
MACBAN is prepared for any peaceable transfer by the states to engender safety.
Faux information is one other situation that makes our safety worse than fixing it.
There have to be a permanent framework with MACBAN in a method that may assist handle safety points.
That free vary grazing have to be stopped to keep away from conflicts between the farmers and the herders
Strengthening an alternate safety preparations and make them complementary to the mainstream safety businesses in Nigeria.
MACBAN ought to embrace and be dedicated to fashionable breeding course of by creating grazing reserves and observe ranching to stop cattle roaming about.
Standing Committee comprising of farmers, MACBAN and the Authorities must be arrange in every state (the place they don’t exist) to make sure synergy and consequence.
We should create financial alternatives for our folks and cut back alternatives for criminalities in our nation”.
Actually, Nigeria have to be operated beneath the legal guidelines of fairness, equality of rights and no one have to be handled as both second class residents or sacred cows.
COMRADE EMMANUEL ONWUBIKO; NATIONAL COORDINATOR
HUMAN RIGHTS WRITERS ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIA (HURIWA) and blogs @www.huriwanigeria.com, www.thenigerianinsidernews.com, [email protected]