Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Re: SV: USA Africa Dialogue Series - The Dangerous Criminalization of Fulani Ethnicity

Re- Ogbeni Kadiri's rationality "a scientist would ask where God stood to create Heaven and Earth" The BBC asked the big question : Why is here something rather than nothing ?

I was looking for Ayotunde Bewaji's rather unique expression "parochial deity" and not surprisingly, found it here .

As Israel's first prime minister David Ben Gurion famously said, "I were an Arab leader, I would never sign an agreement with Israel. It is normal; we have taken their country. It is true God promised it to us, but how could that interest them? Our God is not theirs. There has been anti-Semitism, the Nazis, Hitler, Auschwitz, but was that their fault? They see but one thing: we have come and we have stolen their country. Why would they accept that?"

Indeed, today, from even thousands of miles away there are people still beating their chests and saying "God gave us the land!" the presupposition/ presumption being that my God the supreme power and authority over everything that exits or does not exist , gave me the land and therefore, deny it who may or who can, it's my land because my God is the Lord of everything in heaven , on earth and indeed everything in between. As the Nobel Laureate in Literature chimed,

" Precious angel, you believe me when I say
What God has given to us no man can take away "

Now what would happen if everybody had their own personal or national deity, to whom they could appeal as an authority when claiming their ancestral lands? Prof Bewaji quotes Jack Goody - who I once heard say exactly that at a seminar at the Institute of African Studies in 1970, with Kwame Arhin sitting besides him - about imperialists stealing African man's land because he had no papers to prove that such lands belonged to him...

Just the other day, I was checking out what Einstein had to say about religion and stumbled on this expression which comes close to the definition of parochial -for others perhaps the antithesis of parochial : in a short extract in which he was speaking about "free will" Einstein said, "I firmly believe, but I hope that someone will discover a more realistic way, or rather a more tangible basis than it has been my lot to find. Even the great initial success of the quantum theory does not make me believe in the fundamental dice game, although I am well aware that some of our younger colleagues interpret this as a consequence of senility."

"as a consequence of senility" - an accusation we had best avoid using when arguing with elders...

On Wednesday, 15 February 2017 02:28:18 UTC+1, ogunlakaiye wrote:

Ayotunde Bewaji, may Ògún exempt you from its combat. Religion is not like science where empirical evidence is demanded to support a postulation. While a religious person must believe that in the beginning God created Heaven and Earth, a scientist would ask where God stood to create Heaven and Earth. Religion is based on belief while science is based on proof. On October 1, 2010, President Goodluck Jonathan induced Nigerians to believe him that the car-bomb blast, near the Eagle square on that day was detonated by "Northerners" who were against him as the PDP candidate for the 2011 impending presidential election. But empirical evidence showed later that MEND was behind the blast that killed eight people. The masterminds of the blast were Okah brothers and Charles Okah swore to an affidavit in South Africa, where he was tried, that Jonathan had ordered for the blast so as to blame it on "Northerners" who were opposed to his 2011 presidential ambition on the platform of PDP. The 84-year old mother of the then Finance Minister and Co-ordinator of the Nigerian Economy, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, was kidnapped in 2014, and the honourable minister blamed the kidnapping on fuel importers to whom she had opposed fuel subsidy payments. The kidnappers, who later quarrelled among themselves over the ransom received, were arrested and it turned out that all the kidnappers were criminals from the same ethnic group as Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala that had nothing to do with fuel subsidy claimants. Yes, Ayotunde Bewaji, there have been political arsons, murders and unrest all over Nigeria in the recent past, but no evidence has been produced to implicate Nigeria's Fulani herdsmen, in those satanic politics. If you have one, please produce it for public scrutiny.

Contrary to your insinuation, I have never advocated or approved that Fulani Herdsmen should roam randomly on peoples' farms and legitimate properties. Rather, I have defended their legitimate rights to arm themselves against cattle thieves. The type of weapon each of this Fulani herdsmen carry is incapable of unleashing the type of atrocities being credited to them. If you assert that wanton killings had been perpetrated by intruders on people's lands, the onus is on you to produce evidence against the identified intruders who had committed the crime. It is unjust and primitive to condemn people for crimes not proved to have been committed judicially.

You mentioned land ownership in Nigeria and the encroachments of landless Fulani herdsmen on other peoples' lands. On that I will assert that Nigeria is governed by the most cynical leaders and officials in the world and for whom citizens lives simply do not matter. Land use decree of 1979 that placed the ownership of land in Nigeria under the Federal and State's government ought to have settled the problem of land ownership. Instead of the collective ownership of land by all Nigerians, Nigerian leaders and officials have exploited the Land Use Act to expropriate to themselves lands that were before owned by the entire community collectively, through the issuance of Certificate Of Occupancy to themselves. Although the Constitution says that all the natural and mineral resources of Nigeria belong to all Nigerians and that the Federal government is only tasked with the responsibility to manage the resources for the benefit of all Nigerians, we have seen how Nigerian leaders and officials have stolen oil blocks from our crude oil reserves. Air that we breath is not a product of any individual human being but nature's gift to all of us. The air within the geographical space of Nigeria belongs, naturally to all inhabitants of Nigeria. I want you, Ayotunde Bewaji, to imagine what would happen to the masses of Nigeria, if it were possible for the heartless and selfish Nigerian leaders and officials to in-capsule all the air in the Nigerian space for themselves as they have done with land and crude oil reserves. The rains that fall over Nigeria; the sun that shines over Nigeria; the air that we all breathe in Nigeria; the Rivers that flow in Nigeria and fishes that swim therein; and the geographical land area of Nigeria are not the products of anyone or group of individuals but nature's gift to all Nigerians. Anyone laying personal claim to the ownership of any portion of Nigerian landed property is a thief. Legally and judicially, a farmer owns the crops in his farm but not the land. A herdsman must not graze his herds in a farmland even though the land does not belong to the farmer. That herdsmen still roam about to graze their cattle in the 21st century in Nigeria, shows that Nigeria has the most irresponsible government on the surface of this earth. A government that subsidized miscreants so as to prevent them from bombing crude oil pipes, should be able to liberate Fulani herdsmen from endless wandering in search of grazing ground for cattle that would eventually turn up in the pot of soup of Nigerians. Even farmers in other sectors of agriculture who are major producers of Nigeria's staple food, still work today with primitive equipment i the forms of hoes and cutlasses. 

You, Ayotunde Bewaji asked: What exactly is wrong with being black?; What is wrong with being Nigerian?; Is it intellectual incapacity?; and Is it genetic?.

There is nothing wrong with being black or being a Nigerian, my dear Ayotunde Bewaji. Intellectually, when you look at the Nigerian officials in the ministries, departments and agencies (parastatals), their academic qualifications are far more superior to the problems they are employed, elected, selected or appointed and heavily remunerated to solve. What we are witnessing in all aspects of governance in Nigeria is not intellectual incapacity but rather fake intellectualism leading to fake productions and imaginary economic developments. If the backwardness of Nigeria depends on genetic as you seem to wonder, neither you nor many other Nigerians would have been criticizing our officials and rulers for retrogressive economic and industrial developments in Nigeria. Professional degradation is a plague that affects all segments of governance in Nigeria and how I wish our leaders and officials had imported economic and industrial performance enhancer tablets for their consumptions instead of bleaching creams and Brazilian hair attachments for their wives and concubines.


Från: 'Ayotunde Bewaji' via USA Africa Dialogue Series <>
Skickat: den 14 februari 2017 08:28
Ämne: Re: SV: USA Africa Dialogue Series - The Dangerous Criminalization of Fulani Ethnicity
Ogbeni Salimonu Kadiri, alias Ogunlakaiye, good morning. It may not have occurred to you that in civilized society, where the failed policy used by Europeans to steal land in Africa, because communities cannot produce titles to their ancestral land (Jack Goody), cannot any longer be used to empower either state, nations or groups to enter upon, occupy or capture such land without consequences. If any group continues to roam on other people's land, with or without animals, such a group must admit to criminality consequent upon such actions - whether perpetrated by themselves against the people whose land they trespass on or by resisting land owners. The responsibility for the violence occasioned by such unlawful entry must be borne by the perpetrators of the unlawful entry, not the resisting victims of invasion.

Many persons refrain from joining argument with those who continue to defend the indefensible in modern society, because they would not want to antagonize the powers that be, or appear as if they hate anyone, or for some perceived political correctness; but if and when your own family land is occupied by some strange, foreign or unauthorized persons, then you will understand what I mean. If such occupiers were to come with intent to maim and kill, should you object to your ancestral land being taken over temporarily or permanently, then you will know why Nigeria may be in for serious dismemberment if this scourge of roaming herders are not addressed intelligently.

Professor Agozino claimed here that he suggested that the "Northern" business class should embrace Cattle Ranching. Some of us indicated that he was not inventing the idea. When our own Babatunde Fafunwa suddenly started using his Muslim name on becoming Minister of Education, with the Nomadic Education mantra, many of us sniggered at the idiocy of the idea. When we were told that Nigeria went to Argentina or some other South American country to learn what to do with cattle rearing, we roared with disbelief. We believe that there is no need to go anywhere outside of Africa to solve the problem of roaming marauders, as research within the academy in Nigeria and without have made it clear that such unsustainable practices cannot bode well for anyone.

What was the premise on which the River Basin Authorities was built? Why do we have abundance of Rivers and Streams all over Nigeria and claim that grazing land must be accessed by wandering on other people's farms, backyards or public highways? Why can't we copy examples of animal husbandry found in many other African countries? Why must any one be allowed to follow the cattle from Sokoto to Lagos in the 21st Century? What happens to their families left behind? What about their education, health issues, insurance, pension, etc? Must we always be so mean to the poor among us - called Talakawas? What is the genesis of the Palestinian problem - with Jews using their parochial deity as justification for divine land-grabbing? What is the challenge between Modakeke and Ife? What job is Salimonu Kadiri angling for with the regime of PMB in this whole pursuit of the imponderable? Why is it difficult for Ogbeni Salimonu Kadiri to see the incendiary nature of wandering animal husbandry in contemporary society? Are the true Fulani really against proper integration into modern society, or is this a political issue serving the interest of some powerful, faceless, destructive group(s)?

I was based in what was then Southern Zaria, now Southern Kaduna, during my NYSC service year in late 70s. There was a huge irrigation project somewhere in Malali or thereabouts. The expansive Northern Nigeria is blessed with arable, grazing, farming and highly rich soil with rivers and streams such that, but for the selfishness of Northern elites, that takes pleasure in subjecting the masses of their own to poverty and domination, there is no reason for any roaming or wandering animal keepers, hired or owners. Why do we keep barking up the wrong tree? The Nigerian problem is a leadership that is imbecilic in its greed, myopia and absolute inability to appreciate what is called enlightened self-interest. They forget that the troublesome child who says his/her mother will not sleep; he/she also will not sleep! It is Macbeth murdering sleep and not able to sleep anymore. What they fail to understand is that a parasite that is intent on destroying itself kills the host first, thinking that it will survive when the host is dead - Eepa n pa ara re, o ni oun n pa aja.

I did not mean this to be this long. But that you, Ogbeni Salimonu Kadiri, acknowledge that there are roaming "Fulani Herdsmen" logically commits you to admitting that such persons must commit criminal acts - whether they carry only long sticks and long knives or AK47 is immaterial. Someone even suggested that there were traditional routes for Cattle passing from Sokoto to Lagos. Does the fact that you have always passed through my yard make it right for you to continue to pass through it - regardless of the inconvenience you cause or destruction attendant to your passing? What exactly is wrong with being black? What is wrong with being a Nigerian? Is it intellectual incapacity? Is it genetic?

There are countries that have no resources that Nigeria has - Australia, New Zealand, and many African countries - with economies built around agriculture that we can emulate. Even Jamaica bred a special cow which became famous. Why are we this way, and Ogbeni Salimonu Kadiri wants to see the corpses of those killed or the court records of those charged, before he recognizes the explosiveness of the wanton killings taking place on the intrusions of strangers on people's lands? What Ogbeni Salimonu fails to understand is that land disputes never really go away, even if the transient occupiers of positions of power intimidate the poor owners into submission on a temporary basis.

I have not addressed the numerous problems with the position of Ogbeni Salimonu Kadiri. But I hope he will be well served to be sensitive to the sensitivities of those who suffer in the hands of intruders and be respectful of their agonies and not continue to rub salt on their open wounds. There is absolutely no need to even be debating this issue in the 21st Century. When stripped of all the trappings of office, religion and ethnicity, criminals are just criminals! I hope he will be able to decode that. 

Ire o.


On Monday, 13 February 2017, 16:22, Salimonu Kadiri <> wrote:

The charges are serious : rape - Cornelius Hamelberg.

Can you please furnish us with the case file of rape-charges against Fulani herdsmen in Nigeria and in which courts were they arraigned and charged? What are the names of the arraigned and charged Fulani herdsmen? What were their pleas against the charges levelled against them?

You Ogbeni Kadiri want the whole world to believe that all the reports by the Nigerian military and Police, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, the thousands of corpses of Nigerians killed by Fulani herdsmen and Fulani militants, their blood crying out from the earth and thousands of victims who survived to tell their tale - you want us to believe that the reports that all those who have been badly injured and maimed and report of those who have been raped by Fulani herdsmen/militants "are not based on truth or facts, rather they are based on prejudice and lies against Fulani herdsmen?"- Cornelius Hamelberg.

Can you please avail us with the Nigerian Military and Police reports in which it was specifically confirmed that Fulani herdsmen killed, maimed, raped and destroyed villages en-route their grazing paths in Nigeria?
What are the names of the human beings behind Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International that wrote reports confirming the discovery of thousands of corpses of Nigerians killed by Fulani herdsmen? What are the evidences produced by those organisations to pin those crimes on Fulani herdsmen?

I am neither a Fulani nor a herdsman but I am a human being just as the Fulani herdsmen. The difference between me and your cohorts is that I put myself in position of Fulani herdsmen and figure out how possible it is for them to commit the type of crimes attributed to them in a community where they are extremely in a minority and in the company of their herds. Factually, the Fulani herdsmen breed their cattle for commercial and economic reasons which make it impossible for them to descend on the potential consumers of their products and kill them. If I were a Fulani herdsman driving about 100 cows to graze near a village, will I abandon my cattle at the risk of losing them to cow rustlers (thieves) in pursuit of a woman or a girl to rape? How many Fulani herdsmen accompanied by their cattle would be required to perpetrate the type of horrors attributed to them? I ask this question since I saw only one armed Fulani herdsman with a rifle grazing his cattle in the bush in one of the links posted by you and in another one, there were two Fulani herdsmen armed with wooden rods grazing their cows in the bush and not on farmlands.

It is said in my mother tongue is that, Eni má riré gbà, ètó ni ki o sé réré, which literally translates to, if you want justice for yourself, you must practise justice to others. There were occasions when Fulani herdsmen had trespassed into farmlands but their organisation, Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association, had intervened for out of court financial compensations to farmers whose plants had been destroyed by cattle or as in the case of Olu Falae in Ondo State, through court adjudication. Not all Europeans with moustache are Hitler(s); and not all Jews are Shylock(s), therefore, not all Fulani herdsmen are murderers and rapists. It is unjust to condemn Fulani herdsmen on unproven allegations.


Från: <> för Cornelius Hamelberg <>
Skickat: den 13 februari 2017 15:37
Till: USA Africa Dialogue Series
Ämne: Re: USA Africa Dialogue Series - The Dangerous Criminalization of Fulani Ethnicity
Ogbeni Kadiri,
Let me also be pedantic. I crave your indulgence. Please be patient with me. When it comes to style , if I could, I would much prefer to dribble like Jay Jay Okocha than the Argentinian bull Diego Maradona.
I have been made to realise that this is not a time for more pedantry or bigotry or spitting fire, unnecessarily.
As Fela would say, "This is an African Court !"
The charges are serious : rape
Sahara Reporters: Fulani Herdsmen
He who feels it knows.
If it was - God forbid - my mother, daughter, sister or my dearly beloved wife that had been - God forbid - raped by some Fulani herdsmen over there in Nigeria, methinks that by now I would probably be crying out for their blood or at the very least seething to bring them all to Justice. Now all I can declare is empathy and understanding of the plight of my Igbo brothers, their mothers, wives, daughters, sisters in the danger zone - those that have been raped. Ideally I want to be my brothers' keeper and therefore refuse to go on prevaricating on this very serious matter.
You Ogbeni Kadiri want the whole world to believe that all the reports by the Nigerian military and Police, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, the thousands of corpses of Nigerians killed by Fulani herdsmen and Fulani militants, their blood crying out from the earth and the thousands of victims who survived to tell their tale - you want us to believe that the reports by all those who have been badly injured and maimed and the reports from all those who have been raped by Fulani herdsmen/ militants "are not based on truth or facts, rather they are based on prejudice and lies against Fulani herdsmen."? Come again!
Once again we are back to a position akin to when the authorities were first intimated that the Chibok girls had been abducted by Boko Haram - Good Luck Joe was slow to react and in that regard we should not be like him or her - nor should we disbelieve that some of the girls eventually became women, albeit not by rape or mere conversion or forced marriage to their captors.
You will probably concede that from your vantage but less than omniscient point of view the innocent Fulani herdsmen rampage through other peoples' farmlands armed with their deadly AK-47s only for the peaceful protection of their cows and that although they have killed thousands of Nigerians as variously reported - yet you are sure that - yes - they have murdered and are capable of murder but they have not raped anybody's wives or women or at least that the Ohanaeze didn't say that in so many words...
You " find it unreasonable that a herdsman will abandon his cattle to invade a community in order to rape girls and women." But you don't find it equally unreasonable that a herdsman kills men and women? So you believe that the herdsmen have been invading communities? The herdsman doesn't have to abandon his cows - raping, killing and maiming surely doesn't take all day and all night - nor does he have to be worried that in the meantime the cows would all go astray or abandon their shepherd herdsmen and run away...
The media has presented us with many reports and allegations that Fulani herdsmen have committed thousands of murders and have raped women and peoples' wives, which makes your insistence that the Ohanaeze's accusation that the Fulani herdsmen "rape our people" - our people in total - men women children - should not be taken as sexual assault but only in a more general sense of, according to you "the act of despoiling of Igbo communities economically and judicially."
Please bear in mind that every statement, especially the one under our purview, the Ohanaeze's - has a context - a situation - in this case the general mayhem being caused by Fulani Herdsmen on the move and operating in their areas, their communities. Apart from other supporting evidence such as that Enugu men are said to be divorcing their wives on the grounds that they have been raped by Fulani herdsmen/ militants, the only material/ evidence that is at hand and intact and that both of us are addressing/ examining/ scrutinizing at the moment is what the Ohanaeze said. We should bear in mind that he was speaking Her Majesty Queen Elisabeth's mother tongue perfectly and choosing his words carefully when describing the old era which has changed to a new era, "an era of AK-47 toting and rampaging Fulani herdsmen who" and please note his word progression - in common English parlance " who kill, maim and rape " Kill - maim - rape
We are at liberty to ask him : Ohanaeze, who do they kill, maim and rape? Who?
His answer, still in that continuous sentence flow is "our people ". They "kill, maim and rape". What else do they do ? "and destroy our farms !"
Pedantically speaking, do you Ogbeni Kadiri want to tell us that our women are not our people or part of our people?
Dear Ogbeni Kadiri, it is this tail end of his statement "and destroy our farms" that tallies with the meaning that you seem to have derived from what he said, that when the Ohanaeze accused the Fulani herdsmen " who kill, maim and rape" he only meant (your words) : "the act of despoiling of Igbo communities economically and judicially". Of course we could save ourselves all the speculation as to what he meant by asking him what he meant. I'm sure that having said that the Fulani herdsmen " kill, maim and rape OUR PEOPLE " - i.e. kill out people, maim our people and rape our people, "and destroy our farms" , he did not mean to (your words) : "to limit and confine, without valid reason, the meaning of rape to sexual intercourse by intimidation or force."
However - and this is also significant - the Ohanaeze has been quoted, but it's probable that his words that have been quoted in that Vanguard news article is not all that he said - as often happens with newspaper reporters, perhaps only some of what he said was quoted verbatim and that would explain why he has not issued a statement saying that he had been misquoted or denying that women in his community have been sexually violated by Fulani herdsmen.
Finally, I should like to bring to your attention Victor Jara's Vientos del pueblo .
In Cornelis Sjunger Victor Jara ( Cornelis sings Victor Jara) Cornelis Vreeswijk's interpretation and translation of that song : Folkets vind starts with the words
"Nu våldtas mitt folk igen.
Oss dränka i blod vill dom."
Which I translate as
"Now my people are being raped again.
They want to drown us in blood "

In that song-poem, Jara's use of rape tallies with the interpretation that you want to impose on the Ohanaeze use of the word rape to mean " the act of despoiling of Igbo communities economically and judicially." - but even there - or especially there rape is much more than merely "despoiling (Chile) economically and judicially"

So you could be right - and all the victims and accusers wrong.
In Swedish
Nu våldtas mitt folk igen.
Oss dränka i blod vill dom.
Dom talar om friheten
med svarta handen bakom.
Dom skingrar allt folk som boss,
barn utan mor och far.
Dom tänker påtvinga oss
korset som Jesus bar.

Än döljer dom all sin skam.
Dom döljer den bakom lag.
Men mordet ska bryta fram
och visa sitt rätta jag.
Och många tusen män
ska offra sitt liv för mord.
Och blodet ska strömma igen
och gödsla vår goda jord.

Jag vill ha ett riktigt liv
med mina barn och syskon
och rekonstruera våren
som ligger där och förblöder.
Mig skrämmer ni inte alls,
ni eländets herremän!
Beröva oss hoppets stjärna!
Den ska nog bli vår igen!

Blås, folkets vindar, blås!
Blås åter! och än en gång!
Ni spränger mitt hjärtas lås
och fyller min mun med sång.
Än sjunger han, er poet,
så länge min mun kan andas
och ända till evighet
hans aska med er ska blandas.

Automated Google Translation:

Now raped my people again.
We drown in blood they want.
They talk about freedom
with black hand behind.
They dispels all people who boss,
children without a mother and father.
They're going to force on us
the cross that Jesus bore.

Than hide them all their shame.
They hide behind the law.
But the murder to burst forth
and show their true colors.
And many thousands of men
will sacrifice his life for murder.
And the blood will flow again
and fertilize our good earth.

I want a real life
with my children and siblings
and reconstruct spring
lying there, bleeding to death.
I scare you at all,
You misery gentlemen!
Depriving us the star of hope!
It will probably be ours again!

Blow, the people's attics, blow!
Blow re! and once again!
You blow my heart lock
and fill my mouth with song.
Still he sings, you poet,
as long as my mouth to breathe
and ever and ever
his ashes with you to blend."

My favourite song from that album : Fimpen

Wishing you a nice day !

On Sunday, 12 February 2017 21:36:39 UTC+1, ogunlakaiye wrote:
Once again, I have to bother you with my pedantry - display of useless knowledge or minute observance of petty rules or details - which at present had its origin on your posted link : 2017/02/fulani-herdsmen- destroy-farms-rape-our-wives- ohanaeze. The said report, from Abakaliki, in the Vanguard Nigeria was written by Anayo Okoli, Peter Okutu & Ugochukwu Alaribe. Reporting in their own words they wrote: The President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Nnia Nwodo, has said the prevailing activities of the Fulani herdsmen had

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