Open Letter To Buhari: We Won’t Accommodate RUGA In South East
By Kalu Nwokoro Idika
Dear President Muhammadu Buhari,
Considering your obsessive inclination to cause anarchy, I have decided to damn protocols in order to deliver my message to you through this letter. Although this is neither the first nor the second time I will be writing officially to you as the number one arrow head of this Fulani government of Nigeria, I will continue to address your ineptitude as the need arises.
Posterity will not be fair to me if I don’t straighten your neck before you detonate this bomb that is about to consume everybody including your very person.
However, this letter is designed for two reasons. First, to remind your government the final position of South East and South South region of Nigeria concerning the purported RUGA settlement. Second, to sound a stern warning to you and your collaborators that no part of Igbo land will be ceded for any kind of Fulani settlement.
Sir, for obvious reasons, it is becoming an embarrassing thing to see how you and your team of clueless technocrats have continued to make caricature of governance in Nigeria. Your government since inception has constantly created unnecessary trouble for the Nigerian people. It has become a government of few religious supremacists striving to intimidate and subdue a larger part of the population. If you don’t know, your bullheadedness to foist RUGA settlement on other section of the country is an outright call for anarchy. It will be too erroneous for you to assume that you alone has the monopoly of force to torment perceived enemies who do not share in your religious chauvinism. But I can really assure you that time is far past when such hooliganism was tolerated. The people of the Eastern region shall wrestle and resist every plan of your government that appears to champion ethnic parochialism at the expense of others to a stand still.
Your presidency so far has been full of regrets and wasted hope. Nigerians across the globe have continued to recount the pain and death you brought to their door steps after your questionable emergence in 2015. Insecurity and poverty have worsen under your watch. Every length and breath of Nigeria has been turned into a slaughter house. There is no day that passes without hearing stories of how Fulani terror movement kidnapped, killed, maimed and raped adults including little children. Instead of the government which you are superintending to deal with these criminal elements squarely, they choose to look the other way while these ruthless murderers go free. The lukewarm approach of your clueless government has further laid credence to the consensus opinion that the marauding killer herdsmen have a presidential approval. This statement is based on the high level of fearlessness shown by these rampaging Fulani bandits in their operational maneuvering.
Sir, we the people of South East and South South are not in any way against the RUGA settlement. It is a welcome development. But all we are saying is that such arrangement is not economically viable for us. Therefore we see no need to queue into the idea. We are not going to be part of the program. It will be too foolish to accept such a primitive suggestion when already countries around the globe are embracing modern ranching as a veritable means of cattle breeding. The Northern region can carry on with the project, after all it’s for their betterment.
Our position is simple, we are not interested in the RUGA settlement project and no part of the Eastern region will be ceded to any individual or group in the name of RUGA settlement. Your government should not listen to any governor, senator, social cultural organization and individuals giving the false hope that RUGA settlement will be a reality in the Eastern region. Let’s avoid hoping against hope. It is a dream that will never materialise even in the next 200 years. Any view that is contrary to the one above is a call for war. Is better we allow common sense to prevail than arrogance and extremism to becloud our moral sense of judgement. RUGA is nothing but a contraband goods before it’s arrival. And there are no two ways to this statement of fact.
Sir, this is the final warning shot to you and your collaborators. We have condoned enough insolence from your government. The Eastern region has been denied everything since 2015 your government came on board. You called us 5% and also replicated it by relegating the entire region from the scheme of things in the national equation. The only reasonable thing you feel you can do for us is the RUGA madness that will rather expose us to predatory extremism. This is to show your level of wickedness.
To avoid bloodshed, inform the scoundrels who are fomenting this trouble with you to abandon it, because we shall resist this move to its logical conclusion. We the Easterners have no desire to share our ancestral lands with strangers, least of all the Fulani tribe. These lands were bequeathed to us by our fathers, and to them by their father’s fathers before them. We also want to bequeath them to our children and them to their children’s children. RUGA has no place in our region. Your government can sponsor all manner of media propaganda in the name of sensitizing the public on the economic benefits of RUGA, but it doesn’t matter to us. Only the gullible few who do not know the antics of Fulani tribe will fall for it. Let every Fulani man that wants RUGA settlement to relocate to his country home and establish it there. There is no space for such foolishness in the South East and South South.
In conclusion sir, like I said before, we won’t accommodate the RUGA settlement plan in the Eastern region. Let’s avoid doing anything that will throw the final spanner on the works. Though, one Nigeria project is a mirage, but let’s abstain from doing those things that will lead to unnecessary chaos. As one Nigeria mantra is gradually becoming a full blown sham to all and sundry, I will suggest we divide and leave each other in peace than in pieces.
Accept my letter in good faith.
Kalu Nwokoro Idika is a political analyst and freelance journalist