President Muhammadu Buhari

Those analysts who have been trying to decipher the president’s body language should take a break. The president has spoken loud and clear. Carrying out that gangster-like raid on Igboho house, while he had long enabled Fulani provocations, is the president’s language; it is the language of complicity.

Hail, President General Buhari! Nigeria about to implode, salute to you! All dissatisfied, angry, and marginalised Nigerians thank you; the DSS, and all other official enablers and national champions of Boko Haram, terrorism, oppression, hypocrisy, banditry, and deceit, for showing your full hand (of cards) of bigotry and incompetence with your recent actions. In two, very uncharacteristic swift and decisive actions within just one week, the Buhari presidency rocked the country, and made the international world blink. First, Nnamdi Kanu, the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) leader, was abducted in a foreign country to face trial for terrorism in Nigeria. Next, the DSS raided and destroyed the family estate of Akoni Sunday Adeyemo aka Sunday Igboho in Ibadan, based on intelligence that he was stockpiling arms.

While Justice Abubakar Malami was sparse on the details of Kanu’s arrest, probably because of its international implications, the Department of State Services (DSS) delighted in, no, actually gloated over their invasion of Igboho’s estate around 1:30 am of July 1, so I will concentrate on the raid. At his press conference, Dr Peter Afunanya, the DSS spokesperson, paraded the eleven men and one woman, Lady K, arrested during the raid, displaying an array of assorted guns and an ancient Yoruba bullet-proof jacket he claimed were recovered from the estate, along with some Nigerian passports and other documents seized during the raid. He was proud to report that only one member of the invading party was slightly wounded, despite being met with a hail of bullets by Igboho’s men, and that they killed two of them.

How remarkable! Congratulations to the president and his men! Who could have guessed this government had the intelligence, the guts and the muscle to go after those it considered a threat to the country’s security? Or that its punitive arm could stretch beyond Nigerian porous borders!

Meanwhile, for the past two years (and that’s being conservative), and still on going, mind you, this same government of President Buhari has remained in comatose silence, while various acts of terrorism have been committed against law-abiding citizens across the country. Nigerians are groaning in anguish over the serial atrocities that have taken over their land and invaded their everyday lives, but the government’s desperately needed intervention fails to materialise. Our school rooms and highways have become kidnapping headquarters; our forests, rape depots and centres of gory killings and mutilations. Boko Haram terrorists are accommodated like an opposition party in a democracy. The president is blind to inter-ethnic killings exploding all over the country and appears hopelessly unable to stem the state of insecurity. Mr Buhari seems unconcerned that 90 per cent of the atrocities and acts of terrorism are being committed by those who proudly and fearlessly proclaim themselves as Fulani on a mission to overrun the country. Now, some people claim these are Fulanis from neighbouring countries, and not Nigerian Fulanis, but the silence of the president, who is Fulani, and who at one time referred to Fulanis as his cousins, is suspect, and the stench of tacit approval is suffocating.

Consider the fact that graphic videos of the murderous thugs circulating everywhere are opportunities for government representatives to seek out the terrorists, not through midnight raids or covert operations, but for negotiations, and compensations. The Amotekun security outfit jointly instituted by the five western state governors was rendered ineffectual when the Federal Government denied them gun license, thus exposing Yoruba communities to hordes of vandals; Ibarapa, Igangan, and Yewa town are prime examples in this regard. The invading terrorists operate for hours, unhindered by law enforcement agencies, and when community vigilantes happen to catch any of these operators and hand them over to the police, the police free the marauders and detain the community vigilantes. Meanwhile cattle herders can carry guns to defend their cattle, and terrorist bandits openly carry AK47s to meetings with government officials to negotiate financial compensations and terms of rehabilitation. In fact, the Commander of the Special Task Force in Plateau State, Major-General Atolagbe, who dared to arrest, and publicly parade some Fulani militia in Plateau, was reportedly removed from office.

Some few weeks ago, the president finally emerged from his long silence, and deigned to speak to the country. Three major points stood out for me in his question and answer-style speech. These are, that he, President Buhari, the Commander-in-Chief, (a) is satisfied with the state of insecurity in the country, (b) has been governing constitutionally, and (c) will deal with those who disagree with his first two assertions in the language they understand.

Mr President Buhari’s language violently and brazenly proclaims two sets of rules operate in the country – one for the favoured, the other for the rest. This is the nothing but the language of ethnic bigotry that promotes and sustains terrorism and ensures virulent insecurity.

The president claims he has been governing constitutionally. Where does the constitution say the government can invade a residence in the dead of the night, purportedly to arrest a citizen without a search warrant? Did someone report the residence as a scene of an on-going crime? Where does the Constitution allow the Federal Government to sneak into a State like a coward or terrorist to execute such a massive operation without the knowledge of the governor, the Chief Security Officer of his state? Was Igboho summoned before the DSS, and he refused?

In this age when a child knows how to video-record a momentous event, where is the documentary evidence of the guns being retrieved inside Igboho’s estate, if not of the so-called gun battle itself? As terrified as she was, Lady K, a blogger and the only female arrested by the DSS, was livestreaming audio of the ongoing invasion to alert her followers, but it took the DSS up to twelve hours to get its story straight for a press conference. Clearly, the DSS must know a video evidence would be critical to their case in court, but instead, they destroyed the CCTV in their victim’s home. What are they hiding? Or, perhaps, what are they trying to add illegally?

Remarkably, our men in charge of the country’s security left the scene of their crime unsecured, and for hours, and people wandered in and out freely. Well, the Igboho family members and supporters could record the wreck left behind by the DSS. Their video evidence reveals a scene of wanton destruction, deliberate vandalisation, long trail of blood of some person(s) being dragged along a corridor in the house. It looked more like a mission to kill than a constitutionally authorised arrest.

Those analysts who have been trying to decipher the president’s body language should take a break. The president has spoken loud and clear. Carrying out that gangster-like raid on Igboho house, while he had long enabled Fulani provocations, is the president’s language; it is the language of complicity.

When those in power tolerate self-identified Fulani terrorists as bandits to be coddled and rehabilitated, but unarmed community vigilantes are hunted down like terrorists, it is the language of division.

Mr President, you have justified to the whole world why the country is in uproar, why more than sixty per cent of the country is demanding self-determination, under the umbrella of the Nigerian Indigenous National Alliance for Self Determination (NINAS). They reject, completely, the false rhetoric by one nation to enslave the different nations cobbled together in 1914 under British colonialisation.

Mr President Buhari’s language violently and brazenly proclaims two sets of rules operate in the country – one for the favoured, the other for the rest. This is the nothing but the language of ethnic bigotry that promotes and sustains terrorism and ensures virulent insecurity.

With these actions, Mr President, you have full revealed your true intent beyond a shadow of doubt that you are not governing according to the Constitution, that you are not interested in being the president of the whole country, and that you do not hesitate one second to hold the rest of the country hostage to fulfill whatever your agenda is. One of your lieutenants in this hostage agenda stated it more explicitly, not too long ago, that, from the little corner of the northern part of the country where the Fulanis are settled, right down to the Atlantic ocean, is an extension of the Fulani heritage land. In other words, the totality of Nigeria is Fulani property, and the country, with all its resources exists at their pleasure. If he was an ignoramus pretending to be knowledgeable, I heard no one in your administration repudiate his stupidity.

Mr President, you have justified to the whole world why the country is in uproar, why more than sixty per cent of the country is demanding self-determination, under the umbrella of the Nigerian Indigenous National Alliance for Self Determination (NINAS). They reject, completely, the false rhetoric by one nation to enslave the different nations cobbled together in 1914 under British colonialisation. You could not have pleaded their case more eloquently, Mr President.

Mr President, if your body language for the past six years still confuses some, you have now broken it down for them most unequivocally, For those who heard you right all along, it is déjà vu back to your draconian regime of 1983, and you have made their resolve stronger. Gone are the Emperor’s days of absolute power, when the Roman gladiators before their brutal fights hailed the Emperor with, “Those about to die Salute you.” As imperfect as it is, we are now in a democracy, we have activists, not gladiators, and the salute has been radically altered.

Those fighting for equity indict you.
Those fighting for their dignity defy you.
Those fighting for security reject your state- enabled terrorism.
No going back.

JenwiFA fr2c2b@gmail.com.

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