–Blank NEWS Online (NIGERIA) -By Austen AKHAGBEME:
Apart from the inherent contradictions bedevilling the Nigerian state from inception, which of course, was brought about by ethno- religious constructs and the fact of History, the immediate cause of the present agitations and conflagration in Nigeria, is the Fulani question.
The various matching orders given to the rogue variant of the nomadic herders by Governor Akeredolu of Ondo state and the subsequent audacious move by the Yoruba activist, Sunday Igboho, became the proverbial key that unlocked the pandora box.
As at today, tempers are high and the deep seethed animosity among the various ethnic nationalities is flagrantly being reawakened. Very recently, the rumour was rife that the north is “placing embargo” on supplying the South staple food, blah blah. It may look so innocuous, but such pronouncement and negative body language is a pointer to the dangerous level of intolerance among Nigeria’s ethnic divide and this is scary.
This forced Union is grossly being undermined by the various responses of some regionally based sociocultural groups and ethnic individual mouthpiece like Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi state.
While some are threatening and bragadocious, others are deep and thought provoking.
The most remarkable but annoying part of it all is the fact that the Leviathan has suddenly turned taciturn in the midst of all these, not minding whose ox is gored. This seems to give credence to the general notion that the Nigerian state, is on a quick sand afterall. This, again, is disheartening.
Against the frightful and frightening circumstances of serious security challenges blighting the nation vis-a-vis government’s obvious nonchalance about it, what do we rather do to ensure a temporary respite and personal safety and security on the interim?
Will you now blame those who agitates for regional security outfits and those who calls for restructuring or outright dismemberment of the Lord Lugard’s contraption entirely?What can Nigeria do to benefit from this crisis that will make her a better enclave for her citizens to dwell in?
The continued “pampering” of the bandits in the North and the unequal highhandedeness with which agitators in the East are handled is fanning the embers of distrust and disunity among the Nigerian people.
“Ethnic profiling”, a new expression added to the Nigerian political lexicon, do not allow us to call a Spade its actual name. When you do, you will be running the risk of being called an ethnic jingoist who do not understand that crime and criminality is universal.
This is our present collective dilemma. While we’re waiting for a permanent solution to the blighting insecurity challenge in our Nation, we are being forced to cope with any bad news that may emanate from the thick bushes of the north. Let us hope that we’re not truly waiting for Godot.
- Austen AKHAGBEME is a Columnist with Blank NEWS Online