FULANI cultural leaders have called on Nigerians to stop blaming their people for all of the crime currently being committed across the country pointing out nit all of the recent kidnappings and murders are carried out by their people.
Last week, the entire country was enraged after Mrs. Funke Olakunri, the daughter of Afenifere leader Pa Reuben Fasoranti, was murdered by hoodlums thought to be Fulanis in Ondo State. There have been calls for the government to clampdown on Fulani cattle herdsmen who have constituted themselves into a terror group of late, terrorising the entire country.
However, Alhaji Mohammed Bambado, the Sarkin Fulani of Lagos and chairman of the Association of Fulani Chiefs in the southwest, said Fulani people should not be accused of all the killings in the country. He added that his people also condemned the murder of Pa Fasoranti’s daughter and called on the federal government to put all the security agencies on red alert with a view to stopping the rampant killings.
He warned strongly against politicising the security challenges in the country or pointing accusing fingers at any of the ethic nationalities in the country. Issuing his own condolence message to Pa Fasoranti, Alhaji Bambado said it was wrong to politicise the murder.
Alhaji Bambado said: “Papa, I, on behalf of the entire Fulani community in the entire southwest of Nigeria share your grief and pray the almighty Allah to console you and rest the soul of the deceased. Jumping into the conclusion that such undesirable act of killings come from a particular ethnic group even before the police investigation would further polarise the country along ethnic groups would not do the country any good.
Meanwhile, Afenifere and the Yoruba Council of Elders (YCE) have lampooned the national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Asiwaju Bola Tinubu over his statement that herdsmen should not be stigmatised in the country. While commiserating with Pa Fasoranti, Asiwaju Tinubu had said it was wrong to blame kidnappings and deaths on the herdsmen.
His remarks, however, elicited angry reactions from Afenifere and the YCE who warned him not to water down seriousness of Fulani invasion in the southwest. Afenifere, publicity secretary, Yinka Odumakin said: “So we should start stigmatising the victims of their terrorism?
“That is a very insensitive and inconsiderate statement. It is more shocking that any rational being would go to the home of a 93-year old, who just lost a daughter to make such statement that amounts to dancing on the grave of the deceased.
“It is very convenient to play cheap politics and suck up to terrorists with the death of other people’s children. If the shoes were on his feet, would he be uttering such words? He should have kept quiet rather than making such reckless statements.”
YCE president Col Dansaaki Agbede, added: “Some politicians would want to justify and mystify their comments on the incident so as to water down the seriousness of the situation. In as much as he would not want to join issues with anyone of the sad loss of Pa Fasoranti’s daughter, we have huge problems on our hands as these herdsmen are no ghosts.
“They live with their people who are domiciled here and we have to take urgent action to stop this type of killing. We don’t need to wait until it degenerates.”