- Says attacks on Fulanis, capable of destabilising Nigeria
The Apex Northern socio-cultural and political organisation, the Arewa Consultative Forum, (ACF) on Saturday warned that the attacks by Yoruba youths on the Chief of Fulanis in Oyo State, was capable of leading to another Civil War in the country.
ACF said it was such attacks that culminated into the 30-month Civil War in 1967 and warned the federal and state governments to act immediately to stop further break down of law and order. A statement by the forum made available to our correspondent in Kaduna also called for the prosecution of those responsible for the attack to avoid reprisals.
The statement signed by Emmanuel Yawe, National Publicity Secretary, of the Forum and tagged, “Stop the drift in the South West” said: “The Arewa Consultative Forum this morning received reports of an attack by Yoruba Youths on Alhaji Saliu Abdulkadir, the Serki Fulani in Oyo State. “In the reports, he was attacked and driven out of his house, 11 cars and his house burnt with his family members now living in the bush.”
ACF added: “There are allegations that one Sunday Igboho, an agitator for Oodua Republic and who issued an ultimatum giving Fulani people seven days to leave Yoruba land, is the instigator of the attack.”
According to ACF: “The most disturbing aspect of the attack is the allegation that the security agents who were earlier warned about its imminence stood by helplessly as the attack was carried out.
“The ACF is worried about this trend and calls on the federal and state governments in the South West to move quickly to avert a social upheaval that may destabilize the whole country. “We recall that the civil war in the 60’s started with attacks and counter attacks like this. The governments must be proactive and stop history from repeating itself.
“Those who carried out these attacks must be apprehended and the due process of the law allowed to take its course. “If this is not done there maybe counter attacks in the North and the country will be up in flames. The authorities must act. The ACF is very worried and calls on them to act fast.”
However, the Oyo State Governor ‘Seyi Makinde moved quickly to condemn the assault and warned that his government would not allow anyone hiding under the guise of protecting Yoruba interest to cause ethnic tension and perpetrate crisis in the state.
He maintained that the war which the state and the security agencies need to wage is not against any particular ethnic group but against criminal elements, irrespective of their tribes, religions, or creed.
The governor added that his administration would not allow anyone to threaten the peace of the state by acting unlawfully and saying things that are alien to the Nigerian Constitution, noting that acts that are capable of causing chaos in the state will not be accepted.
A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, indicated that Makinde said this while receiving the new Commissioner of Police in the state, Mrs. Ngozi Onadeko on Friday.
Makinde made it clear that his administration would continue to synergise with all security agencies in the state to fight criminals, hoodlums and bandits irrespective of their tribes, religions, or creed, while urging the police to arrest miscreants causing tension and threatening the peace of the state.
The governor said: “For people stoking ethnic tension, they are criminals and once you get them, they should be arrested and treated like common criminals.
“For this administration, the major pillar for us is security, because we know that all the good economic plans we have won’t be possible in an atmosphere of chaos and insecurity.