At the launch of the book Who will love my country: Ideas for building the Nigeria of our dream, authored by the Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, in Abuja on Wednesday, President Buhari condemned the recent bloodbath in Enugu. He has ordered that the Fulani-terrorists be tracked and brought to book.
Pending the long disturbing silence from the presidency, concerned bodies and citizens have become set to provide the security that the federal government seem unable to provide. As the Afenifere and MASSOB groups buckle up, there has been an emergency summit meeting for all South-East Lawmakers. All hands are on deck to find a desirable end to the nationwide menace.
All of a sudden, the Presidency represented by Lai Mohammed breaks the silence. In his words, Buhari extends his sympathy to the affected and afflicted victims of the Fulani massacres.
“I have directed the Chief of Defence Staff and the Inspector-General of Police to secure all communities under attacks by herdsmen, and to go after all the groups terrorizing innocent people all over the country. This government will not allow these attacks to continue”
What is Nigeria missing in the fast rising attacks from the Fulani-terrorists? How did they get equipped with so much sophisticated arms and ammunition? Who are their sponsors? Who are these faceless cattle owners? Are the Fulani Terrorists an extension of Boko Haram militants?
These are questions that are bugging the minds of many Nigerians at the moment. As both local, state and federal government make security plans. Fulani-terrorists are identified as the 4th most dangerous militants in the world.
Defending their mission in a YouTube video, a Fulani militant says they are out for any move against them or their cows. Going further on, he says that they are not scared because they have allies in high places, Buhari’s government inclusive.
“We will spill (the) blood of everyone in any community that kills one Fulani man. We are armed to the teeth and ever battle ready for any security agencies, if at all there is, because we have brothers in government circles. We have, on our side, top ranking officers, emirs… the military, the police, the secret police (Department of State Security Services), and many more.”
Another puzzle is why the earlier alarm that would have averted these ugly incidents were ignored. Perhaps it is now a Nigerian factor to turn a blind eye till something drastic happens. Just like in the previous massacres by the Fulani-terrorists, there was a leaked information but the system was rather too lackadaisical about it till blood was spilled. The assurance by the contacted Fulani leaders in the state proved futile.
An anonymous Enugu witness had said that prior to the attack, the police force was informed. To foil the plot, arrests were made on Sunday but before anyone knew it, calls from “high places” ordered their immediate release. On Monday morning the killers fulfilled their mission.
As for who these terrorists really are, there are strong speculations that these are not the regular Fulani-herdsmen who have grazed their cattle all over the nation for years without any clash. According to Eric Omare, Ijaw Youth Council spokesperson in Yenagoa,
“We are of the view that the attacks are being carried out by terrorists who are disguising themselves as Fulani herdsmen… We believe that the attacks by the so called Fulani herdsmen are deliberate terrorist acts with religious agenda to wipe out some communities in the middle belt and southern part of the country.
In 2014, Vanguard reported the confession of apprehended “Fulani herdsmen”. They confessed to be members of the Boko Haram militant group operating in several states in the guise of cattle rearers.