It is normal to hear so much about where a President comes from, his tribe, and his religion. At least this is how things are done here in Nigeria.
When Jonathan was on the throne, Otuoke, Bayelsa, Niger Delta, and Anglican became common words. It’s almost as if special attention is being allocated to everything that is directly or indirectly related to the President.
The same can be said of President Muhammadu Buhari who replaced Goodluck Jonathan having won the highly controversial 2015 elections when Jonathan had to concede defeat in other to avert post election crisis — a common occurrence after collation of election results and a winner is declared.
Since Buhari came to power, we no longer hear much of Otuoke, Bayelsa, Niger Delta and Anglican. They have since been replaced by the now common words such as Daura, Katsina, North West, Islam, Fulani and herdsmen. When and how this became a standard of some sort, is a topic for another day. However, does the words “regional politics” ring some bells?
In Nigeria, the President is hardly for all. There’s that regional factor playing a bigger part on how Presidents reason after assuming office. We still haven’t done away with, “He’s our son” mentality as widely practiced in the country. If history is anything to go by, this same regional mentality such as ethnicity and religion is the very reason past governments had failed.
The only President who tried to bury this mentality was former President Goodluck Jonathan. That his region accused him of negligence says a lot about his leadership style during his five years on the saddle. He tried to be a Nigeria President not a Niger Delta President. But as he left, his legacy left with him.
Buhari’s emergence as president was believed by many, as a major test to see if truly, a leopard can change its spots. Boy, was I left in utter awe when I saw Buhari in suit soliciting for votes in a TV commercial. The message was simple, “Change”. It was the Fourth consecutive time Buhari will be contesting for presidency having lost previous ones to Obasanjo, Yar Adua, and Jonathan in 2003, 2007, and 2011 respectively. And with a number of factors working in his favour, he did won the 2015 presidential election.
Now 4 years down the line, Buhari has proven to Nigerians that all it takes to scam people in this modern age, is subtleness. Right off the bat, the president seem to know exactly what his priorities are. The insecurity he promised to deal with within months of taking over power, has grown arms and legs with Boko-Haram still standing tall as the head.
While the president can at least, be excused for inheriting Boko-Haram, the least Nigerians would expect is the rise of lethal herdsmen who seem deadlier than the Boko-Haram we’ve known all these years. In fact, the only difference between the two is that herdsmen have easy access to targets since they move about freely without fear. Heck, they even graze inside the Abuja National Stadium, and interestingly, within the vicinity of the Presidential Vila.
At first, there has been denial of herdsmen moving around with arms and destroying villages and its inhabitants. But like the saying goes, “time never lies”. It was only a matter of time and the truth will come to bare. We now know the truth, and one need only to Google “killer herdsmen” to realize how far this mercenaries have come and the scope of damages done by them.
Attacks by herdsmen has become a norm since the APC government took over power, and has since cost thousands of lives and means of livelihood. More worrisome, they took only a span of just four years to overtake Boko-Haram as the most deadly terror group in the country under the very watchful eyes of the Buhari-led government. But the Buhari government will not call Killer Herdsmen a terrorist group.
Adding pepper to injury, recent reports making the rounds says the Buhari government is offering MACBAN N100 billion to stop killing and terrorizing Nigerians. There’s also the claim that Buhari’s government plans to use public funds to build a radio station for his kinsmen. As if the above weren’t bad enough, the government which failed to protect its citizens from the rampaging Fulani militias and bandits is revoking and restricting gun licenses at a time when self defense is now seen as a viable option. Gosh! Buhari’s courage must be commended. He’s not even hiding his intentions as though he owns the country and so can do whatever he wants. It takes a fearless leader to do what Buhari’s administration is doing while Nigerians follow like cows raised for their milk and meat.
What else must Buhari’s government do before we all realize that the government is simply out to kill? I mean the President is denying Nigerians the right to self defense while the killers move about with even more sophisticated weapons. He won’t even call them terrorists despite the thousands of people they killed and villages destroyed.
Why on earth would a President who believes in the sanctity of human life and with good conscience, offer killers of Nigerians N100 billion to stop the killings yet not label them a terrorist group? Why would a sane government use public funds to build a radio station for a tribe whose people have left indelible scars in the hearts of their victims? I mean what kind of justice system do we have in the country? Why are we even talking about this? Why is this government getting away with this? Are other ethnicities in the country this weak?
Thank God for former President Olusegun Obasanjo who joins in condemning the gross injustice Buhari’s government is doing to Nigerians. Why it took so long for baba to speak out the truth a lot of us already know, remains a mystery. But as a prominent Nigerian and former head of State, his words does holds great weight.
The Fulanis are not any better nor superior than any other tribe in the country. We know Mr President loves his own people which is very normal, but he must realize that as a President, every Nigerian is as important as his kinsmen. He must stop playing the regional and religious card and keep to the oat he swore when he took over office back in 2015. Then and only then, will Nigeria survive as a nation.