Utterly gob-smacked Archbishop of Jos, Most Rev. Ignatius Kaigama, has challenged President Buhari to call his Fulani kinsmen to order, even as other Nigerians cry themselves hoarse over regular killings in the Middle Belt and other parts of the country, by Fulani herdsmen.
Archbishop Kaigama said Buhari should explain to his Fulani people that dialogue is better than revenge because cows, important as they are, cannot be compared to human beings.
But that does not mean cows should be killed, stolen or wounded maliciously to deprive their owners of a means of livelihood.
The Archbishop, who is on overseas trip, expressed the sentiments in a statement issued in connection with the massacre of over 200 people in Plateau State.
“I am very far from Nigeria but the sad and bad news from Plateau State are not far from me. I hear that herdsmen are on the prowl again and there is bloodshed, murder of infants, youths, men and women in huge numbers in our beloved land of ‘peace and tourism’. The flagrant and despicable taking of human lives and the continued destruction of homes and means of livelihood is a disgrace to humanity and a shameful projection of a negative image of Nigerians,” Archbisbop Kailgama said from Canada.
“Could our President come out clearly, categorically and courageously to explain to his kinsmen why dialogue is the best solution? I believe not enough has been done to challenge the herdsmen killings. Is it because of the so-called “hidden agenda” or simply the absence of courage, determination, patriotism and political will? The Igbos who merely attempted secession were brutalised and suppressed. Who will suppress these raging evil killers?”
Afenifere, the Yoruba socio-politcal groups, also raised an alarm condemning the wanton killings in Jos, calling on Nigerians not to fold their hands and watch the ominous blood flow.
“Nigerians must gird their loins and see the democratic uprooting of this administration as a task that must be done in 2019 so as to save the country from utter destruction. There is no land where the blood of the innocent is being shed daily like Nigeria that can make progress in any area of human endeavour. Enough is Enough!” Afenifere said in a communiqué issued by Yinka Odumakin, spokesperson.
“The meeting was devastated by the genocide that took place in Plateau State on Sunday in which over 200 deaths occurred, according to eyewitness accounts but the police admitted 100. These wanton killings and official irresponsibility portray Nigeria as a barbaric entity and we Yoruba people are pained living in the same space with the bestial elements which kill innocent people in a cruel manner. Images of little children killed mercilessly with open skulls make anyone with human blood flowing in his or her veins to shrink,” Odunmakin said.
Afenifere asked President Buhari who is the grand Patron of Miyetti Allah to choose between remaining the patron of such an organisation and President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Several other organisations, including Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), have also condemned the Jos killings and criticised President Buhari’s for allegedly refusing to punish the culprits.
Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State who buried over 100 people including two priests in a similar attack in his state, recently, also lamented the attacks in Jos, as he paid a sympathy visit to his colleague Governor Simon Lalong.
Meanwhile, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has poured scorn on President Buhari whom it said paid a belated visit to Plateau State, the scene of the genocide. PDP accused the President of being more interested in his 2019 presidential ambition than what is happening to innocent people in Nigeria.
“Our country has almost returned to a burial parlour. Nigerians are in pain over the needless killings,” the PDP said.