From Tony Osauzo, Benin
An Edo State-based civil society organisation, the Foundation for Good Governance and Social Change (FGGSC), has called on the Presidency to caution the governor of Bauchi State, Bala Muhammed, over a statement credited to him justifying bearing of arms by Fulani herdsmen to protect their cows.
The group, faulting the comments of the governor, described it as ‘reckless, provocative, divisive and unbecoming of the status of a governor in a pluralistic society like Nigeria.’
Addressing journalists in Benin City, the Executive Director of FGGSC, Austin Osakue, said the situation in Nigeria was similar to what led to the 30 months civil war in the late 1960s that resulted in wanton destruction of lives and properties.
‘The statement opens the floodgates of self-help for Nigerians of other ethnic divides and geographical zones to resort to self-help and arm themselves.
‘That President Buhari’s federal government has not reprimanded the Bauchi’s governor so far paints a scenario of the voice of Jacob but the Hand of Esau.
‘How can one ethnic group constitute so much threat to the rest of Nigeria? Who are their backers? Why have repeated calls for ranches fallen on deaf ears?
‘We call on the Buhari government to consult the history books. If it does, it will discover that the exact same events which led to the thirty-month civil war between 1967 and 1970 are playing out now.
‘Those who fail to learn from history will be forced to repeat it,’ Osakue said.