THE UNPROVOKED KILLING OF MY KINSMEN IN KOGI EAST, MIDDLEBELT, NIGERIA.
OSHALOTO, JOSEPH TADE. MISC ABU. A PRIVATE CITIZEN.
Evidently, wanton killings by armed terror groups is not a new thing in our country, Nigeria. The hapless peoples of the central parts of Nigeria are a particular target which have been repeatedly hacked to death by the militant herdsmen.
Members of the noble fourth estate and the general public will recall the deaths visited on the Benue only a few days ago. Several lives were lost.
Oganienugwu and Ikende communities both in Dekina LGA and Abejukolo in Omala LGA in the the Eastern Senatorial District of Kogi state are the latest in this bloodbath.
It is distressing that the stories of killings have not only failed to address the carnage but have emboldened the vile characters amongst us to come on national media spaces to mashall support for the killer herdsman.
Kogi has not been very fortunate in the Nigerian equation of good. Aside from the untold hardship visited on the Kogi citizen by the circumstance of leadership, the Nigerian good always elude the Kogite in a way that mocks our equity, social justice and humanity.
Kogi aside being richly blessed with arable land that supports an array of crops for which the federal government can encourage young people to take advantage, Kogi’s soil is home to scores of solid mineral deposits in commercial quantities. And this is apart from Petroleum which billions of Naira are being needlessly spent for its exploration in other parts of the country.
It boggles the mind that the agriculture of death is what appeals to our conscience as a country. The shrinking of the basin, expanding physical infrastructure and developement, and other climatic realities show that the only alternative to this bloodshed, which the herdsman has done again and again with absolute impunity, is RANCHING. The whole world is watching and wondering why conforming to civilization and commonsense in Nigeria is a question of convenience.
They are watching and wondering why our fascination with bloodshed is unabating in spite of our attachment to religion.
The world is watching why over fifty innocent Kogi people had to fall by the sword of an unchecked militant cattle herder.
This latest carnage is too much. It is absolutely unacceptable to me and every man, woman, youth and child who still have a modicum of conscience and reason.
Despite the humongous amount of money voted, our country’s handling of security matters is appalling. And this is crashing us into the dreadful state of nature in which man is brutish, life is short and anarchy is the law. This betrays the confidence that many had in the person of an aspirant Muhammadu Buhari.
The import of this intervention is not to bemoan the failure of President Muhammadu Buhari – which by the way are many, frankly – but to place a demand on this administration to rejig the country’s security architecture to give it a truly national and effective outlook.
It does no good to make the rest of us Nigerians sorrow. The way and manner in which terror groups travel hundreds of miles to kill and maim us in our ancestral homes tells a sordid story of how the rest of us are truly a defeated lot. It lends reason to the assumption that an expansionist agenda is being effectively targeted and tidied against us middle beltans. Whether this assumption is true or not entirely accurate, I say God forbid.
As a private citizen and one with deep concerns for the liberty, freedom and prosperity of our country, I believe my home state should not be a test ground for the might of the Fulani herdsman over his fellow Nigerian. I believe that government exists to ensure that the peace and quiet of the citizens are guaranteed.
On the strength of this legitimate expectation therefore, I make the following demands on the President and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, Mr. Muhammadu Buhari, the Executive governor of Kogi State, Mr. Yahaya Adoza Bello, and the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris to;
A. Ensure that no killing of this nature and manner repeats itself in Kogi state any longer.
B. Obtain a comprehensive list of names of all the victims (both the dead and the injured) and publish same in at least two national dailies with appropriate memorials.
3. Ensure the arrest, prosecution of the culprits.
4. Send a detachment of relief materials through the the National Emergency Management Agency to the affected communities. And
5. Ensure a comprehensive disarmament of every herdsman who are still willing to graze in Kogi pending the adoption of the grazing reserves.
I am confident that the legitimacy of the APC led government among other vital indices rests on a clean bill in terms of security of life and property.
Signed: The library of Tade. +234802 522 3926