Friday, July 21, 2017

USA Africa Dialogue Series - Re: Toyin:

With all due respect, an odd perspective.

So, instead of encouraging a group of business people to develop modern modern methods of running their business, you chose to pursue that business using the Nigerian army.

In the midst of a nationwide campaign of terrorism by the same group instead of investigating and prosecuting that terrorism, you chose to fortify the terrorists using the Nigerian army.

You are doing all this in favour of the very characters who belong to the same ethnicity as yourself in a polity in which ethnic identification is central above national interests, and in your  government which you have defined in terms of appointments defined by members of your ethnicity, and some are seeing you as operating dispassionately.

How logical is such perception?

Why should the cry be constantly invoked abt Nigerian national resources being used to establish ranches for Fulani herdsmen, all bcs the herdsmen have become a security scourge? What role is being played by the rich owners of those cows the herdsmen herd as well as the Northern Muslim elite who run the Miyetti Allah, the herdsmen's organisation?

A  response cannot be described as 'level headed' that dismisses as a petulant insistence on 'Fulani this Fulani that' an effort to map  a national campaign of terror working in tandem with politicians, a campaign that has generated outcries of pain and consternation across the nation in the face of thousands of murders by members of a particular ethnic group associated with a particular trade, with various state governors taking military and legislative action agst the specific perpetrators of this scourge, perpetrators  known as belonging to a specific  ethnic group and who thus identify themselves with this group, with various organisations in civil society like the Middle Belt elders warning of impending war in the face of this scourge .

As for this other escapist perspective:

'What is wrong is anybody trespassing and destroying any other person's property - and sometimes killing people   - while carrying out his or her business.  These are criminal herdsmen trespassers with murderous outcome,  not "Fulani herdsmen". '

Its an imaginary scenario from a person who wants to rewrite history. The incidence of property destruction and individual murder has become a national epidemic. It is not an issue of 'sometimes killing people'. The writer also chooses to pretend that the systematic campaign of massacre by Fulani terrorism, exemplified by the murdered thousands from the Middle Belt to Agatu to Nimbo is fiction.

The cattle rearing business is a monopoly  of the Fulani. The headship of the Miyetti Allah, the cattle rearers  organisation, is Fulani or Hausa-Fulani. Those who openly justified the Agatu massacre identified themselves as Fulani pursuing an ethnic agenda. Those who carried out the Nimbo massacre are Fulani as demonstrated by the peace talks the governor of Enugu state carried out in the face of news they were coming in to attack, efforts that failed in the face of collusion by govt security agencies. The politicians working to protect the interests of the herdsmen agst those of other Nigerians are not only Hausa-Fulani but even they identify their beneficiaries as Fulani herdsmen.

The only Hausa-Fulani politician making efforts to address the problem, but even then in a way that avoids the systemic massacre the terrorists are known for is senator Shehu Sani , holding meetings with fellow Fulani on the challenge. He does not pretend that the challenge is not a Fulani problem nor does he pretend those implicated are not from Nigeria, one strategy of obfuscation from the govt. 

So, why the struggle to pretend about the ethnicity of the terrorists?

Furthermore, how realistic is it to separate the Fulani herdsmen in general from  the terrorist  strategy they have become associated through their own actions and the concerted support of Hausa-Fulani politicians for those activities?

Is it not escapist to seek a clean dis-identification even as some rightly seek to separate bad from evil eggs?

Is what we are observing not a kind of warfare that blurs the distinction between a military wing, individual murderers and rapists  and the  group as a whole  by mobilising the entire demographic as a potential fighting force free to attack at will and with a strike force in wait to protect its interests, a military strike force that is recurrently activated in various contexts?



On 21 July 2017 at 14:59, Olayinka Agbetuyi <> wrote:
I thought it was being presented to the group yesterday when I sent it as usual.

So here goes:

Sent from my Samsung Galaxy smartphone.

-------- Original message --------
From: Oluwatoyin Vincent Adepoju <>
Date: 21/07/2017 00:03 (GMT+00:00)
To: Olayinka Agbetuyi <>
Subject: Re: Toyin:


why not present this point in the group so i can respond publicly?



On 20 July 2017 at 23:22, Olayinka Agbetuyi <> wrote:
It seems to me that the real reason the FG drafted in the Nigerian Army to take charge of ranching is to de-ethnicize ranching and defuse tension yet you refuse to give credit where credit is due choosing instead to pillory southeasterners (like Gloria) who choose to be level headed rather than follow geo-political trend such as encapsulated in CAOs sweeping declarative "Im from the Southeast?"

Isnt it only when a trained disciplined national
military force accountable to the C-in-C is in charge ( rather than an ethnic band of armed herdsmen accountable to nobody) that war can be averted and state militias rendered unnecessary?

This Government seems to be responding to the hues and cries of its nationals yet it is damn them if they do and damn them if they dont!

I was among those who called on the Acting President not to sermonize his troops but assign them specific tasks in his vision of nation building. 

Here then is a crucial plank of the role of the Army in nation building.

The FG can build on the potential success of this strategy by investing a large part of recovered loot in paying off and resettling herdsmen in alternative trades while establishing modern national ranches across the country for the benefits of all.

Sent from my Samsung Galaxy smartphone.

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