By Chioma Gabriel
If you love one child so much that you would do anything, spend any amount to keep him alive and kicking and the fear of losing him sends unimaginable shivers down your spine, then, you should be human enough to understand the feelings of people from Omoku in Rivers state and the Benue where abominable killings happened recently. The man dies in all who keep silent in the face of tyranny.
Nigerians wake up almost on daily basis with news of senseless killings happening in different parts of the country. You don’t play politics with human lives or show ethnic solidarity where human lives are concerned. Or should we?
Suddenly, champions of support for anything government can no longer find their voices and those who do have been speaking balderdash.
The activities of herdsmen across Nigeria have reached the level of enough is enough, especially where those who should talk or curb the menace are loudly silent or making political statements instead of tackling the issues headlong.
Strange things are happening and our leaders are looking the other way, and those who are speaking are speaking nonsense instead of taking concrete action. It was like Emperor Nero playing the fiddle while Rome was on fire or someone chasing rats when the whole house is on fire. Those who are in charge of the affairs have not said any concrete thing or taken any concrete action like they did in the hey days of Nnamdi Kanu and chased his entire family out of their ancestral home till date and hence, solved the problem of Biafra agitation even when the agitators were not wielding weapon .
Now we have some dangerously armed wackos destroying peoples farms, killing farmers, raping their wives, kidnapping and killing people in their scores and yet, nothing has happened. One can even guarantee that the carnage will happen again and again because of the confidence of the perpetrators who seem to be saying, yes, we are the ones in power, we can do anything and get away with it.
When will Nigeria wake up from its deep slumber and call a spade by name ? Are we going to keep deceiving ourselves, pretending all is well when we know they are not? What’s really going on with leadership in Nigeria? It’s disheartening to have wimps as leaders and men of appetite who only govern for their stomachs alone and that of their family members, forgetting the pains of the governed and the victims of such onslaughts as happened in Omoku and Benue. And the carnage is spreading.
With the silence of the gods, would you now blame the people when they take the laws in their own hands? Nobody craves for a chaotic society but even the ordinary people are no fools. Citizens are beginning to revolt against attacks by herdsmen in some areas by stoning them and sometimes maiming them.
Many governors in their bid to be in the good book of some people or to remain in power for another term in office are dinning with the devil and trading the destiny of the people they swore to protect, keeping silent and not taking actions when their communities are invaded by strangers.
Worse still, strange words are creeping up in Nigeria’s political dictionary. Cattle colony. Please what is the meaning of that? Is that what the cabals have done to Nigeria, as if the suffering of the people are not enough, as if enough hunger, poverty and hardship are not in the land, as if selective war against corruption is not bad enough?
What we have not been told is whether the menace of herdsmen is a religious war or a quest for territorial control. But from all indications, these are clearly terrorists whether we officially tag them as such or not. In just one week of the latest onslaught, no fewer than about 200 homes and huge piles of foodstuff were destroyed. Many people were also reported missing in the attacks.
It was not my imagination but I read a a key government official say that the federal government has not enough for herdsmen and I ask, enough like what? Taking peoples farms and parcels of land by force and giving foreigners to inhabit because one cannot say for sure that these are Nigerians. Why is the menace of herdsmen worse since President Muhammadu Buhari came into power ? Suddenly, you can boldly see a herd of cattle in the middle of the high ways and inside cities as if cows are more important than humans. Why are these herdsmen being pampered? How do they come about the weapons they so dangerously wield, including AK 47, GPMG?
What is really happening that they are leaving to Nigerians to figure out for themselves rather than being told? How come the police, Department of State Services (DSS), soldiers, are not clamping down on the killer herdsmen?
Why are herdsmen committing murder and getting away with it? Are these herdsmen above the law?
As far as I know, these herdsmen just like farmers are businessmen or are they not? Why don’t they want to invest in their businesses by having standard settlements or ranches purchased by them for themselves and their cattle instead of using their own businesses to ruin the businesses of others? Why should people in pursuit of their own private endeavours , shepherd their flock to other people’s land to graze?
The cows destroy the crops and the herdsmen kill the farmers in the most brutal ways. What was that and for how much longer will this be allowed to continue? There is nothing Nigerians have not suffered in the hands of herdsmen and those at the helm of affairs have remained loudly silent or making weak statements that mean nothing.
I think killer herdsmen should be crushed the way IPOB was tackled.
Que pensez-vous ? (What do you think?))