There is doubt that the less-than-royal outbursts of the Lamido of Adamawa, Alhaji Mohammadu Barkindo Mustapha, were correct on some scores, and it is a wonder that the subjects of the royal father were not the ones that spoke some hard truths to some elders of the South, especially South-South, who have been prancing all over the place and letting everyone know that they love President Goodluck Jonathan more than the rest of us.
But it must be admitted that the way some northern elders have been carrying on, threatening fire and brimstone if a northerner, usually in its narrower definition of a northern Muslim, did not come to power in 2015, contributed to the attitude of southern leaders who are rushing too fast and frenetically to defend their son.
The Lamido was right when he said that there was a lot of jingoism and playing to the gallery going on at the National Conference. He said people like him were ready to walk out on the conference. “And Mr Chairman, jingoism is not a monopoly of anyone. Everyone here is a potential jingoist,” he declared. He added: “ Mr Chairman, I just want to sound a note of warning; that is why I requested to be allowed to speak before the start of business today. I have been sitting here for three days watching, listening. I attempted twice to speak but I wasn’t given the chance. So, the note of warning I want to sound is that we shouldn’t take cue from the so-called civilised people of the western countries because they are always after their own interest and they could use anything, coercive, force and other means to protect that interest….
“Mr Chairman, this leads to the debate on the behaviour of some of the delegates here. It clearly beats my imagination on how a gathering of people like us will behave the way we are behaving….Mr President delivered his address here and laid down what we are supposed to discuss and what not to discuss but many people here, sorry to say that, some elder statesmen who claim to be staunch loyalists of the president, but unfortunately these people are in the forefront to contradict what the president said in his address…at the rate we are going, in the long run, if we are not careful, this conference will flop, God forbid and if it flops, the resultant effect cannot be imagined by any of us here.”
Quite unlike a Lamido, Alhaji Mustapha declared that if anything happened to disintegrate Nigeria, he would head to Cameroun or Chad to join his kith and kin. His words: “If something happens and the country disintegrates, God forbids, many of those who are shouting their heads off will have nowhere to go…. But I and the people of Adamawa and many others have got somewhere to go. I am the Lamido of Adamawa and my kingdom transcends Nigeria and Cameroon. The larger part of my kingdom is in the Republic of Cameroun and a part of that kingdom is in Chad Republic. Mr Chairman, a part of that kingdom, in Cameroun there is a state called Adamawa presently in Cameroon. So, if I run to that place, I will easily assimilate.”
Interesting! And going by the sheer amount of endorsement his comments got on the internet, his reasoning is applauded by a large number of northern Muslims. What happens to other northerners with no kith and kin in any neighbouring African country is not their business. What happens to others elsewhere if Nigeria disintegrates? And if Nigeria disintegrates, why does he think it will be burnt down so that the others will look for where to run to? Is that the game-plan? Is there any relationship between what he said and what is happening in Benue and Plateau States, for example? And the Fulani herdsmen who have been shedding blood all over the place, are they relatives from Cameroun, Chad and Niger as has been speculated?
What is the relationship between this reckless statement and one that the Lamido’s subject and Adamawa State Governor, Murtala Nyako, has been making lately tending towards such suggestions of disintegration? Curiously, the statements do not differ in substance from that of the leader of the Boko Haram sect, Shekau, who is telling anyone who cares to listen that he is after “treacherous” Muslim leaders and traditional leaders, in addition to infidels, a common phrase among those who think they know God but derive pleasure from killing and maiming innocent creations of God.
Nyako had hinted in a speech he delivered in the United States that government agents were responsible for these easy pickings by Boko Haram, but Shekau has come out to say it is him and his group. Where Shekau says to Islamic clerics and fellow Muslims in the Civilian JTF to “either flee, take up arms, get conscripted into the army or police, because what I’m telling you is that I have started a war against you. It is now that I have started war against you. It has just begun… You don’t know my madness, right? It is now that you will see the true face of my madness. I swear by Allah’s holy name that I will slaughter you. I cannot be happy if I don’t personally put my knife on your necks and slit your throats. Yes! I’ll slaughter you! I’ll slaughter you! And I’ll slaughter you again and again…
“Now our religion and our way of worship is nothing but killings, killings and killings! Kill and slaughter but don’t eat them… I promise that we will kill all your (Muslim) clerics. Just like I killed Albani and it was splashed all over the newspapers. I’ll kill them all. Who was Albani? He was nothing. I’ll kill all of them. I’ll spare none but who follow Allah and the Prophet. Whoever follows Jews and the west is my enemy;” the Adamawa State Governor says, “Clearly these Strategic commanders are waging a war of Terror (‘making’ a statement to influence an outcome) as well as adopting Insurgency tactics of using terror to achieve a political end against Northern Nigeria. Boko Haram is therefore being viewed as a tool by some evil-minded conspirators to kill key Traditional and political leaders of Northern Nigeria and to cause the disintegration of Nigeria. The people in the North have also begun to suspect that the Objective of all this is to create enough mayhem for an excuse to deny them their democratic right of Vote by cancelling the forthcoming General Elections in the region and also reduce the Voting power of the people there now and in the future through mass killings of its populace especially its youths.”
Pointing fingers of guilt in the direction of Abuja when the chief perpetrator is taking responsibility smacks of clear ignorance or mischief, and to think that such a man rose to the rank of a vice admiral is nauseating, to say the least. Moreover, loyalty is one of the watchwords of men in uniform, and even when they are out of uniform; but this farmer has shown what stuff he is made of when he treacherously abandoned his own party. Who is to say he would not abandon or sabotage the Nigerian project for Cameroun as we have been so educated by his traditional ruler? Time will tell.
Adejoh sent in this piece from Abuja.