Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Fulani Raiders,Itinerant Islamic Students (Almajiri) - Afenifere Cautions Kwankwaso

Pa IS Akintola
The Pan-Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, cautioned the former governor of Kano State, Senator Rabiu Kwakwanso, who is trying to justify the activities of Fulani herdsmen in the South West.

The Senator made a comment last week saying “the issue of conflict between the farmers and Fulani herdsmen is not common to the South west alone. It is not even common to Nigeria. It is all over the sub region”. The Fulani are known all over the continent for being violent nomads who raid villages and farms as the move around the continent trying to escape the effects of climate change as they look for lush green pasture for their cattle to graze.

In Recent times, the Fulani have also become an effective unit in militant Islam specialized in commando raids and guerrilla warfare like we’ve seen in South Sudan (The Messiria tribe) and Nigeria, while the political faces of militant islam try to defend them on TV and Newspapers (Kwankwaso, El-rufai etc)

Afenifere’s publicity secretary, Yinka Odumakin, faulted Kwankwaso on the grounds that his comment did not address the issue of the herdsmen attacks and the abduction of the former Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Chief Olu Falae.

He said, “Kwankwaso’s grouse with Yoruba leaders was our call for an end to the criminal activities of Fulani herdsmen in the region at the recent summit in Ibadan and that the Yoruba nation may reconsider its place in a union that could not protect us and would not allow us to protect ourselves if we did not see any sign to restructure Nigeria into a proper federation.

“Kwankwaso did not condemn the abduction of Chief Olu Falae, the killing of innocent farmers, raping of women and destruction of crops and farmlands in the course of the grazing activities of Fulani herdsmen. He only tacitly justified their activities by offering excuses for their criminal conducts.”

“The issue that we are talking about, education is very important. If all Fulani are given opportunity to go to school, I don’t think they will risk their lives and their animals going into the bush, where there are reptiles. I think the key thing is education.

“Kwankwaso wants Yoruba “understanding of the situation” while his kinsmen continue to draw their blood, violating their women and destroying their farmlands until Mallam decides to give them education may be when we celebrate another centenary.

“The double speak of Kwankwaso is galling as he was a few months ago celebrating the hordes of Almajiris (Itinerant islamic students) in the north as a positive development that provides a demography that could easily be herded for electoral process.

“Senator Rabiu Kwankwaso in an interview he granted Vanguard Newspaper on April 26,2015, lambasted the wife of former President of Nigeria for “insulting” the north over the menace of Almajiri children which he considered a thing of ‘pride,’ saying, “Look at what the wife of the President said about us-northerners. She was just castigating the North almost at every opportunity. You cannot insult us and think that you can get away with it. This democracy is a game of numbers, and that is why we went back and put almajiris together to get about two million votes.

“The issue of almajiris  have been opened to abuse in this country and turned into insults for us. Almajiri here is a positive word but the way they see it is that we are beggars, that we produce so many children that we cannot take care of, and that is what the First Lady was saying and we kept quiet because we had our own way of answering her and we did exactly that on the 28th of March.”

“Kwankwanso further said that the Fulani should be given the opportunity to go to school as if the Yoruba were the ones who denied them such opportunity in almost 40 years that the north has held power since independence.

“With the uncouth, rude and insensitive remarks of Kwankwaso and his ilk in the North which are like pouring salt on injury, it is coming clear to us that there may be a grand agenda with the activities of the Fulani herdsmen either as an advance party of Boko Haram into our territory or an expansionist project.

Odumakin said, “The Yoruba leaders therefore stand by every word in the Ibadan declaration,”

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