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THE PROTRACTED FULANI HERDSMEN SAGA

NOTE: First published on August 5, 2020. The “Published” date on the tab is the date that it was uploaded on this new site. Though some issues in this piece may still be current (depending on…), this is to avoid mistaking this piece as current news.

This is “No Bullshiting,” by Harry Agina.

Greetings, folks!

Yes, indeed, Joe Igbokwe, a Lagos State spokesman for Nigeria’s ruling party, APC, is truly, completely full of shit; and, I will tell you why! He has an irresponsibly simplistic approach to a complex problem…that’s why!!!

THE PREAMBLE:

If I said it once, I said it a gazillion times, that anybody who ventures into the matter of the “right” or privilege of Fulani herdsmen to graze their cattle, and/or settle on other people’s parcels of land across Nigeria, without addressing the core problem, is totally full of shit, meeeeeeeen!!!

        And, what is the core problem? We all know the core problem; anybody who pretends otherwise, is an evil hypocrite, period! Once upon a blog, I stated it myself, and it comprises the open threat of a jihadist agenda by some elements in the Fulani race in Nigeria, and the complimentary evil acts of SOME Fulani herdsmen.

I highlight the word ‘some’ to underscore the fundamental ‘anti-stereotyping’ disposition of the “No Bullshitting” blog. Yes, indeed, I can never overemphasize that majority members of the Fulani race in Nigeria are great and peaceful people; but there is an evil gang among them, which insists that Nigeria belongs to the Fulani race. They insist that they have the right to kill and main everybody else to possess the entire land, because Allah gave it to them. I forever wonder when they had such crazy non-existent conversation with Allah to give them the land, meeeeeeeen!!!

        I maintain that anybody who fails to recognize or admit the madness, and the threat posed by this evil gang, is either as evil as the gang, or too ignorant and too naive for words to describe. My question is this: which of the above is APC and its spokespersons who tell us that the jihadist pronouncements are just mere empty threats by “miscreants”…are they naive, or evil?

The jihadist agenda has been openly and boldly declared, time without number, by several Fulanis. And, beyond the individual jihadist elements and their war threats, Miyetti Allah organization, to which Nigeria’s president belongs, has also openly, boldly justified several killings of citizens by its herdsmen members.

        Unfortunately, we have a government whose response to such constant threats by the jihadists, is as bad as, or, indeed, even worse that the threats themselves. Rather than arrest and prosecute the jihadists for open declaration of war against other Nigerians, the APC that is parading an anti “Hate Speech” bill simply dismisses the most hateful of all the hate speeches, with some stupid response that the jihadists are mere toothless “miscreants,” or some similar bullshit, as if we are all idiots who don’t understand a serious threat when we see one, meeeeeeeeen!!!

        I’m like…wait just a fucking minute, will you; we are quick to arrest and jail, and even kill lesser “miscreants” everyday. The jihadist spokespersons that you call “mere miscreants,” and the AK47-totting evil herdsmen that they encourage by words, and probably support with the guns to commit mayhem across Nigeria, pose much more evil threat to the society than all the other miscreants in Nigeria put together. They are definitely a zillion times worse than the hundreds of unarmed IPOB members that were murdered in cold blood, in just one day of the infamous “Operation Python Dance.” Meanwhile, the same “pythons” were said (by Obasanjo, TY Danjuma, and other bold and sincere Nigerians) to be, apparently, aiding and abetting the so-called ordinary “miscreants” in their jihadist killing and raping and maiming rampage across the nation.

        Okay, I say;  if the jihadists are just toothless miscreants, then arrest and jail them to show us that you are not aiding and abetting them. Show us that you don’t operate the two faces of the law that “No Bullshitting” has forever condemned. Please, show us, for crying fucking out, that you have realised how terrible it is that APC wants to, and have often tried to arrest and prosecute some individuals for some so-called hate speeches, and yet, the persons that commit the mother of all hate speeches are never arrested, or even cautioned to stop. They openly declare war on other sections of the nation; we see the war actually happening, but we are simply asked not to take them seriously. Bros eee, na only a tree wey go hear say they wan chop am down, and still stand there, kamkpe. And, only a fool behaves like a tree in this herdsmen matter.

        To make the matter worse, our presidential spokesman once had the madness to, virtually, tell us that we’d better give up our land and farms to the herdsmen and their cattle to devour, if we don’t want to be killed. Now, I do know that the dude did not really consciously intend his statement to come out so stupidly insensitive to Nigerians. And, that’s an example of the bad effect of immature use of language (syntax and phraseology) in communication, which can make a big difference in meaning.

        The difference that I consciously want to make with the language of “No Bullshitting” is to be blunt about, and hard on persons that bullshit. “No Bullshitting’s” irresponsible, or radical, or entertaing, or great language, depending on who you ask, is certainly not the kind of language that a presidential spokesperson in a democracy should be caught with. Such irresponsible carelessness or flippancy in language in the current Buhari administration, is a product of impunity. And, the impunity derives its power from the fact that there is no repercussion for such blunders.

THE GIST OF THE DAY:

Now, to my gist of the day, in response to Joe Igbokwe’s irresponsible mode of campaign to accommodate Fulani herdsmen in every community across Nigeria. In fact; irresponsible as an adjective is putting it very mildly. Infantile is more like it; because it takes a child to address such a complex and sensitive matter in such simplistic manner. This is the kind of mind that APC puts forward for us, in a nation of millions of brilliant minds. No matter what good intentions that President Buhari may have for Nigeria, such minds in his government and party destroy his plans with stupid confrontational approach to public problems. As I constantly say, Buhari’s spokespersons or Public Relations persons, very often, do Buhari and his government much more harm than good, with their mindless statements and positions on issues, meeeeeeeen!!!!

A good public relations team could have EASILY sold Buhari’s herdsmen and luga settlement idea to Nigerians. They could have convinced Nigerians to accept the cattle ranches, or whatever they call it, to accommodate the herdsmen all over Nigeria; if only they were worth the paper on which their Public Relations and Communications certificates were signed on, meeeeeeen!!!

        The backbone of such sensible and effective campaign is very simple: Just show Nigerians some sincere effort to arrest and punish the jihadist herdsmen and others that are causing the apprehension about all herdsmen among Nigerians, shikena!!!

        There will always be bad persons among the herdsmen everywhere, as well as bad persons among every tribe, too; but if I know that the police will punish any bad herdsmen in my village when they commit any crime, then I would not mind having thousands of herdsmen in my village. After all, there are also bad persons among my own brothers and sisters in that village, too. Also, there are bad persons among my Igbo brethren who reside in various communities all over the country, too; but they get arrested and punished when they misbehave.

So, clearly, the problem about Fulani herdsmen is that they commit atrocities with utmost impunity everywhere, because they seem to have the support of the government to do whatever that they like. Indeed, we have heard some of them boast that they can do anything because the president is their baba. Hence, every sane community in Nigeria is scared of having them in its midst.

        Yet, in his utter naivety or mischievous hypocrisy, Joe Igbokwe is quoted to have asked “what is so difficult about giving the herdsmen some land?” And I’m like…motherfucker, people are legitimately or justifiably afraid to die…that’s what!!! Are you too stupid to understand the apprehension, or what, huh?

If Joe Igbokwe had any sense at all, he would propose my view here to Buhari and his security agencies. Advise them that they must show us some sincerity in addressing the atrocities of SOME herdsmen, in order to win the confidence of all Nigerians. And then, Igbokwe must go back to school of Public Relations, and learn how to appeal to us with a good media campaign, to accept the good herdsmen. He must cite exponential instances of a RENEWED SINCERITY of our law enforcement agents to arrest and prosecute criminal herdsmen in order to win that public confidence.

So, somebody, please inform Joe Igbokwe that his infantile simplistic approach and statement is the reason for the uproar among Igbo people, not nevessarily what he said. I, for one,  agree that every Nigerian should be able to live and do business everywhere in Nigeria. But I also know that nobody has the right to acquire another person’s land illegally or by force. And, most importantly, nobody has the right to massacre his hosts as some herdsmen do.

Therefore, I repeat, Joe Igbokwe’s approach to the acceptance of Fulani herdsmen in various communities of Nigeria, is very infantile, because he does not address the key issue of SOME herdsmen’s atrocities.

        Anybody may pretend all that they want to, but the fact still remains that a great majority of Nigerians of non-Fulani descent have the popular perception (whether correct or incorrect) that the government is complicit in the herdsmen’s atrocities, either by commission, or by omition. Many believe that Buhari’s government is aiding and abetting the jihadists to overrun Nigeria, because he is Fulani. Unfortunately, facts on record do give some credence to this popular perception, and its resultant apprehension.

        Mind you, Mr. President is most likely unaware of the idiotic and destructive approach of his cabinet and party members to the problem, which justifies the public perception. His key error is having a team that has no idea how the hell to run a public campaign of unification, which must be hinged on sincere enforcement of the law of the land, without ethno-religious bias and favoritism.

The ‘president’s men’ are too impunity-stricken, and  too incompetent to understand that it is not enough to bark at us to shut the fuck up and stop accusing Buhari of complicity. They are too incompetent to understand that we need to see signs of non-complicity, and not just some stupid hypocritical claim of non-complicity. Indeed, ‘the president’s men’ are simply too unschooled to understand what a sensible public relations team has to do to establish public trust, which will encourage Nigerians to accommodate the herdsmen.

        And, few moves that they have to make include:

     (1) Arrest and prosecute Miyetti Allah leaders whenever they repeat their past audacious support to killer herdsmen, with some mad justifications, which compared cattle to human lives…

     (2) Arrest and punish the idiots that threaten us with jihad and their claim to own Nigeria…

     (3) Arrest and punish evil herdsmen when they commit atrocities across Nigeria… shikena!!!

Unlike Joe Igbokwe, a mature, sincere, and objective mind would not be so stupid to condemn any community in Nigeria for being apprehensive over having Fulani herdsmen in their midst, without considering the fact that some of them are pure evil jihadists. Unlike Igbokwe, a mature and sincere mind must first think of this fact, as well as think of my solution approach above, before expecting any community to welcome and embrace herdsmen in their midst.

        When Joe Igbokwe puts a machinery in place for the above approach; then, and only then, will it make sense if he wants to appeal and make an anti-stereotiping case for the good non-jihadist ones among the herdsmen. Then, and ONLY then would an APPEAL and Sensitive campaign to accept herdsmen show some maturity and objectivity, and then, yield good result, meeeeeeeeeee!!!

By the way, the community with the current herdsmen episode that Joe Igbokwe referred to in Igbo land, is actually my own Nnewi town. And, I think that Igbokwe is a total idiot if he wants to settle his herdsmen in my backyard without telling us how he plans to ensure that my village does not get wiped out overnight by jihadists. Such atrocity happens frequently in the north; and this dude wants to bring it down to my village. And, that’s a whole lot of bullshitting, meeeeeeen!!!!

I really feel very sorry for people like Joe Igbokwe in Nigerian politics, who are willing to sell their souls for money and/or power. I can bet you anything that Mr. Igbokwe would not take his present position if he was not a spokesman for APC, who is working to please his paymasters at the detriment of my people in my village. And, he would hesitate to take such position if his own sister or mama has been raped by some evil herdsmen, or worse, as they have done to other people’s mamas and sisters and daughters.

        But then, some self-serving crooks that are called politicians in Nigeria would sell their own mamas and sisters for money and political power, anyway. Who knows, maybe, if Igbokwe’s own mama or sister or daughter got raped by bad herdsmen, he still would not give a damn, just to please his paymasters. He might still feel obligated to show his paymasters that he’s working hard for the APC agenda in Igbo land, despite the raping of his mama or sister or daughter.

Yes, sir; to many Nigerian politicians, nothing matters as much as their quest for money and power. And, that’s what I call a whole lot of political bullshitting, meeeeeeeeen!!!

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