Herdsmen: We’ll resist attempt to turn Yorubaland to killing field ―Gani Adams
AARE Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland, Otunba Gani Adams, on Thursday vowed that Yorubaland would resist any conspiracy aimed at killing its people at will, urging President Muhammadu Buhari to urgently mandate security agents to arrest rampaging killers masquerading as herdsmen in the country and bring them to justice, to avoid a total breakdown of law and order.
The Yoruba Generalissimo made this vow in a statement made available to newsmen in Lagos by his Special Assistant on Media, Mr Kehinde Aderemi, in reaction to the killing on Tuesday night of the Officer-in-Charge of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), Saki Unit, Oyo State Police Command, by suspected Fulani.
The officer, an Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP), was macheted to death by suspected Fulani herdsmen during an operation in a forest on the Saki-Ogbooro Road in Oke-Ogun area of the state.
Adams, while lamenting the killing, described the dastardly act “one killing too many,” declaring the spate of insecurity in the country as worrisome that called for condemnation by all right-thinking Nigerians as the killers had now become “bold enough to start killing security officers.”
The Aare Onakakanfo lamented that there was more to all the ongoing killings by the herdsmen, in which several thousand lives had been lost whereas every Nigerian had the fundamental right to live.
“The first fundamental right of a Nigerian is the right to life. It is when you are alive that you can enjoy other rights. Once this right is taken away from you through killings and murder, you cannot enjoy any other right. Nigerians demand right to life. More than a thousand Nigerians have been killed in the last one year. Is Nigeria at war? There is more to all these killings,” Adams lamented.
Speaking on the resolve of the Yoruba to defend their land against any form of conspiracy, Aare Adams said the diplomacy of the race on national issues, especially when it bordered on security, should not be misconstrued for cowardice.
“The diplomacy of the Yoruba on national issues, especially when it borders on security, should not be misconstrued as cowardice. It is part of our nature to accommodate people from other ethnic nationalities but now, our people cannot go to their farms again because of the fear of the unknown. The Federal Government must immediately check activities of these killers to avoid plunging the country into an avoidable war.
“There is no war in Nigeria, there is no famine, no earthquake, but the number of IDPs in the country is more than what obtains in a country where war is going on. Murder of Nigerians, including pregnant women and children, continues every day. What is really going on?
“Perception is everything. The Federal Government is not helping its own image with the belief by Nigerians that the presidency is always silent when the issue concerns Fulani herdsmen.
“Let me remind the government that killing and murder remain serious crimes in our law books. No level of politics can change this. Nigerians are being killed and the government seems helpless. Utterances from government officials such as the Defence Minister, Brig–Gen. Mansur Dan–Ali (rtd), and the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, are not helping matters. One wonders if we are in the same country.
“Peace and security cannot be guaranteed where there is no justice. To enforce the law, security agents must ensure justice for all and sundry. Nigerians were shocked to wake up on New Year Day and hear the news of killings in Benue State. Now, Nigerians living in Nasarawa, Taraba, Adamawa, Kogi and others don’t feel safe. Senseless killing is like cancer and if not quickly checked, the situation can lead to a complete breakdown of law and order because Nigerians have the right to defend themselves.
“Historically, the Yoruba are known to have the capacity to defend themselves. These killers are testing waters by burning the farm of Chief Olu Falae and invading the farms of prominent people in the South-West. We will no longer accept activities of this murderous gang in Yorubaland. Enough is enough,” Aare Adams warned.
Speaking further, Adams told Buhari that the only solution to the various crises in the polity was for him to restructure the country, contending that restructuring was the only system that would bring about a just, fair and egalitarian society.
This was just as he welcomed the report of the Governor Nasir el-Rufai- led All Progressives Congress (APC) Committee which also recommended restructuring, but quickly remarked that what the committee had done was not different from the position of the 2014 National Confab.
“Restructuring is the only system that will bring about a just, fair and egalitarian society. I welcome the report of the Governor Nasir el-Rufai APC Committee which also recommended restructuring but what the committee has done is not different from the position of the 2014 National confab.
“If Nigeria is going to survive as a nation, this country must be restructured. This is the time to have true federalism, state police, resource ownership and control, and an entirely new constitution deriving its legitimacy from the people,” he said.