Of Cows and Sacred Cows

By Jude Atupulazi

In life one of the hardest things to bear is pretence. Pretence when something is awfully going wrong. A lot of things are going wrong in Nigeria and people who are in high up places are pretending. It is crazy.

Anyone in Nigeria knows how bad things have become. They know that things are so bad and going horribly wrong that at any moment the country may go up in flames. But rather than try to avert that, those who should do that are busy further pushing the country to the precipice. If there is anything that can consume the country quicker than any other thing, that is the Fulani wahala.

These people, believing; and rightly so, that they have the support of the leadership of the country, have been embarking on an orgy of killing. To date, it is believed that they have spilled more blood than the dreaded Boko Haram sect, despite the short while they have been on the scene. It is so bad that they have been acknowledged as the fourth deadliest terrorist organization in the world. But back home, they are treated with kid gloves, pampered and cuddled like babies.

It has gotten to the extent of attempting to forcibly take land from owners and give to them in the name of RUGA. The same benefactors tried to establish a radio station for them too. But the outrageous thing is that this group of confirmed murderers are walking the streets freely, destroying farmlands and sacking host communities. To date, no one can point at any one of them that has been arrested, prosecuted and sentenced. Buoyed by this, they have become even more emboldened.

Today, they have taken over some major highways, turning them to human abattoirs. The Kaduna Abuja Highway has become a highway to hell. Killing and abduction of travellers have become almost a daily occurrence. People have become so used to such on that highway that it is no longer news.

Now, the Lagos highway that connects the west to the east has joined the theatre of war. It is one of the busiest highways in the country. Over a week ago, the herdsmen struck at the Ore axis of the highway, killing the daughter of a popular politician from the west, Mrs Funke Olukunrin, nee Fasoranti. They abducted others.

Now, this particular killing is raising dust; more dust than others before it had raised. The reason is not far-fetched. She was the daughter of a powerful father from a powerful zone of the country. Suddenly, the Buhari Government, previously not given to shedding tears; even if those of the crocodile, is shedding tears now. The government even sent a delegation to commiserate with the bereaved family.

One of the government’s people that came was Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the man who is doing everything under the sun to replace Buhari in Aso Rock as our president. But it was not the fact of his going there that caused ripples; it was what he said there. Rather than condole with the family, he decided to play politics with the death. He devoted his energy and time to defending the Fulani who were generally believed to have carried out the attack.

Tinubu wondered why anyone should single out the Fulani as the culprits when what happened could have been done by ordinary armed robbers or kidnappers. He did everything to shift the blame from the Fulani and we know why. He is among a growing number of Nigerians who believe that licking the boots of the government in power will help them to attain their ambitions or to have food on their tables.

To these people, anything the government does is right; even if the government slays their parents and burns their homes. Yet, these are people Nigerians look up to to end all this madness by their intervention. But because of what they are eyeing, they are ready to eat shit and clap for the one who heaped it on them.

That is why these people who have unfortunately found themselves in the corridors of power can see a huge problem and have the effrontery to say there is no problem. That is why they have not seen what we have seen concerning the Fulani butchers. That is why the hundreds that have been killed were regarded as nothing, simply because they were mere villagers with no connection. That was why Buhari uttered not a word of sympathy when 72 people were killed in one fell swoop by the Fulani two years ago in Benue State. That is why the same government never bothered to commiserate with families whose members were wiped out in Plateau State. They kept mum because those people were lesser Nigerians who can be seen but not heard.

Now, the daughter of a high ranking Nigerian has been killed and the air space has been taken over by lamentations by the same government, even though they are trying desperately to shift the blame.

The killing has also brought the west into the fray. This is a region that has been supporting the present failed government in the hope that they will produce the next president. They have been closing their ears to all the noise generated by the atrocities committed by the Fulani because, probably, they believed the war will not enter their theatre. But like all wars, when they start, the bullets do not distinguish between friend and foe. Now it is falling on everybody and everybody has started complaining. This is just the beginning for those still living in a fool’s paradise.

It is at this juncture I will share with you, a piece I read by a friend. It was probably written in a fit of anger after he saw through the ruse of the government’s show of concern to the Fasoranti family. Read with me.