The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has described as a constitutional crime, an unmitigated evil and an impeachable offence the absolutely ill-advised decision of the Muhammadu Buhari administration to go into dialogue in Zamfara State with armed fulani militia and bandits.
It expressed dismay that the government reportedly plans “to appease these mass murderers with the whopping sum of N100 billion from the tax payers under the guise of setting up cattle ranches for their totally privately owned businesses as herders.”
The group has also carpeted the acting inspector General of Police, Alhaji Adamu Mohammed, for “gleefully” announcing the ‘truce’ reached in Zamfara to chase out bandits between the Federal Government’s delegation made up largely of Hausa/Fulani Moslem dominated internal security team of the current administration and the Miyetti Allah cattle owners Association- a group that supports the activities of armed fulani Herdsmen over the past few years.
HURIWA expressed disappointment that a supposed chief law enforcement officer of the Country can descend so low as to beg persons suspected to have been carrying out persistent armed banditry and attacks across Zamfara, Kaduna, Niger, Katsina, merely begging them to stop attacking Nigerians when it is the constitutional obligation of the Nigeria police force to enforce law and order and bring all criminal suspects to face the legal consequences of their crimes against humanity and against the Nigerian State.
In a media statement issued on Saturday against the backdrop of the purported meeting between the Federal Government and the leadership of Miyetti Allah cattle owners Association suspected of funding the activities of armed fulani herdsmen and bandits in Zamfara State, the rights group said the only possible reason the current administration could enter into dialogue with armed bandits is because the offenders share the same ethno-religious affiliations with the holders of the top security portfolios who make up the exclusive Hausa/Fulani dominated Internal Security architecture of the current administration.
This, it said, offends the Federal Character principles of the Constitution. Many Nigerians have on several occasions and in numerous publications asked the Buhari administration to balance the composition of his top security appointments to reflect the federal character of the federation of Nigeria.
“The members of the current national security team made up of mostly one ethnicity and persons of one religious affiliation same with the armed fulani herdsmen and bandits have always made decisions that reflect their biasness and inclination to pamper and protect these armed bandits who ought to be dealt a heavy blow in line with the constitutional provisions. The other time the Minister of Defence who is from Zamfara State was the person who rather than condemn and order the arrest and prosecution of armed fulani herdsmen unleashing mayhem and violence in Benue State was the one who tried to provide some kind of justification for these dare devil blood curdling attacks on Benue communities by blaming the properly passed state legislation banning open grazing of cattle which has been at the core of much of the bloodshed.
“The Minister of interior who is Fulani Moslem has on many occasions downplayed the gravity of the armed Fulani violent attacks and dismissed it not as a terror campaign but as a mere law and order issue which the police can handle. These members of the internal security team including Mr President have openly made statements that are obviously ambiguous and have failed to decisively treat these attacks by armed bandits and armed fulani attacks as a major national security challenge. This is why there is the urgency for President Buhari to obey the constitution and appoint persons of diverse ethno- religious affiliations to make up the national security team and professionally and clinically tackle the rising waves of insecurity and national paralysis”.
“As a group of committed patriots, we are shocked to read that this government has entered into a communion of the devil with the armed bandits and armed fulani herdsmen who have wreaked havoc and unleashed devastation across many communities in Nigeria. Why do we have laws and why do we have institutions of law enforcement? This shameful piece of bad news of seeking to bribe outlaws and terrorists by this government must be seen for what it is. It is treason that must be seen as an immediate impeachable offence. All those who communicated with bandits and outlaws must be arrested and prosecuted for high treason because the laws must not be a respecter of any person”.
HURIWA recalled that in a bizarre twist, the Federal Government practically offered monumental bribe against our laws to the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria, MACBAN, by offering it N100 billion over two years to stop kidnapping in the country.
The Federal Government delegation was led by the Minister of Interior, Abdul-Rahman Dambazau, and met with MACBAN leaders on Friday.
HURIWA quoted the media as reporting that this satanic meeting was a closed door event which lasted for over five hours as monetary negotiations according to a source dragged on until N100 billion was accepted.
MACBAN had said it would take nothing less than N160 billion.
But briefing news men after the meeting the exhausted Minister said, the “gathering is part of steps we have taken to tackle insecurity and clashes between herdsmen and farmers.”
“You should not forget the fact that we have extended the meeting as a regional one when the Economic Community of West African Countries hosted a conference on this.
HURIWA quoted the media as saying that General Danbazau affirmed as follows: “These issues were discussed, and part of the dialogue was to provide a national action plan on security challenges and solutions by all members of the ECOWAS commission, and to present it to the commission for consideration.
“That is the main reason we have come to Kebbi State, to dialogue with leaders of herdsmen as part of the process.”
The media recalled that herdsmen have been on rampage since 2015 at the ascension of Mr Muhammadu Buhari as Nigeria’s President pillaging, sacking, rapping and kidnapping for ransom which always lead to deaths.
The records of kidnapping has reportedly made major national roads especially in the North West impassable. The Abuja/Kaduna road is one major road that has been affected.
HURIWA quotes the media as reporting that the herdsmen also attacked and killed many people in villages and farms in Benue, Zamfara, Plateau, Nasarawa, Kogi, Kaduna, Enugu, Imo, Cross River, Edo, Delta, Abia, Kwara, Taraba, Osun, Ondo, Sokoto and others.
The killings associated with the fulani herdsmen led to the group designation as the fourth most dangerous and deadly terrorist group in the world by the World Terrorist Index.