Opinion: Why Fulani Herdsmen Cannot Be Tagged Terrorist Group

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The conflict between farmers and Fulani herdsmen in some parts of the country has been an aged long problem that has led to the deaths of so many innocent people across Niagara. States such as: Benue, Taraba, Adamawa, Kaduna, Zamfara, Nassarawa, Plateau, Niger, Kogi State and even some States from the Southern region have had their share of it.  The recent one has been of a great concern to Nigerians.

The recent phase of the crisis can be traced to 26th of April, 2014 where about 17 persons were killed in Guma Local Government area of Benue State (Vanguard 27, 2014).

In recent times as a result of the killings between herdsmen & farmers, there have been calls from some quarters that Fulani herdsmen should be proscribed and tagged as terrorists group. While some people are mischievous about their clamor that herdsmen be tagged terrorist group, there are some with genuine reasons, but ignorant of the facts why is difficult to tagged Fulani herdsmen as a terrorist group.

In view of the above, let me briefly enumerate some of the reasons why Fulani herdsmen cannot be tagged a terrorist organization:

  1. Unlike Boko Haram, Alqaida, ISIS etc. that have distinctive identities, Fulani herdsmen are a tribe of people who rear cattle, and is not every herdsman that get involved in confrontation with the farmers.
  2. Secondly, Fulani is an ethnic group that is beyond just herdsmen, just like other tribes, we also have criminal elements among them. So, tagging them terrorist group is like tagging the entire Arabs as terrorist group because of ISIS and Alqaida.
  3. Not all herders are Fulani men and not Fulani men are herders.

Some said Buhari was quick to declare IPOB as a terrorist group but refused to do same with Fulani herdsmen. In as much as I know the sentiment or grievances any one may share, the Federal Government was able to tagged IPOB as a terrorist group because Nnamdi Kanu separated its nomenclature from the Igbo as a tribe or ethnic group.

Another thing that makes the proscription of IPOP easy is foisting a flag of an utopia, not existing country in a sovereign nation mobilizing the entire ethnic group to believe in the cause; collecting taxes & levies as if a constituted authority.

I hope, this will send true message to those who may not be conversant with what informed the government decisions. As for the agents of corrupt elements making needless argument for political gains that will never rescue them from the hooks of EFCC, they should continue their show of shame.

God bless Federal Republic of Nigeria.

– Wada Yahaya 

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