Shall We Crucify T.Y. Danjuma Like Obasanjo?
Nigeria News takes a look at the recent comment of the former Minister of Defence, TY Danjuma on herdsmen and its implication.
Nigeria’s former Minister of Defence, retired General T.Y. Danjuma’s recent comment has attracted both condemnation and adulation.
He said at the maiden convocation of the Taraba State University that the Nigerian military and the police were aiding and abetting the killings by herdsmen across the country.
He called on residents of Taraba to rise against the brutality of the herders and not rely on the army and the police to provide security for them or else they will die one by one.
Danjuma is from Taraba of course and a Jukun. To him, the killings by herdsmen are strategic and it is more of ethnic cleansing Nigerians must resist.
Most herders are Fulani and coteries of President Muhammadu Buhari. The herdsmen have caused lots of damages and killings in some parts of the country, including Benue, Plateau, Zamfara and Taraba States.
However, these herdsmen were the largest victims of the attack by Jukuns on the Mambilla Plateau, Taraba State. The Jukuns killed many of them, including children and pregnant women.
The Emir of Kano, Alhaji Sanusi Lamido who happens to be one of the patrons of the Myetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association, the umbrella body of the herdsmen had to call the attention of the Federal Government to the killings of his members on Mambilla Plateau.
Danjuma is an elder statesman and he is expected to join in the effort to stop the bloodshed in Nigeria but he is more concerned about the safety of his ethnic groups at present. He is against the activities of the nomadic herdsmen.
Before he spoke at the weekend, Danjuma had visited former Head of State, Ibrahim Babangida where he lamented over the activities of the marauder herders.
Though the outcome of their meeting was not made public, it was gathered that the two elder statesmen were not happy with the way the Buhari’s administration is handling the issue.
One could infer that the three retired generals that had so far spoken about the present regime are against the strategy being used to curb the herdsmen activities in some states.
There were killings in Plateau State and yet former Head of State, Gen. Yakubu Gowon who is from the place would not ask his people to take up arms against the rampaging herders. Gowon will always want a peaceful resolution.
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s letter to Buhari addressed many of the security challenges, including the continuous invasion of farms and villages of Nigerians by Fulani herdsmen. He urged President Muhammadu Buhari to be radical with his policy on security, especially on the herdsmen, most of who are from his clan.
As it was then, so it is now for Danjuma that many commentators condemned Obasanjo. Though Obasanjo was diplomatic, except when he said that Buhari should not contest for the second term, Danjuma threw away diplomacy but was blunt with signs of anger that the herdsmen were on an ethnic cleansing mission and must be stopped without delay.
The Nigerian Defence Headquarters has since replied Danjuma, describing his statement as unfortunate and should not have come from a former defence minister who knows the modus operandi of security in the country.
The military exonerated itself from any complicity in the herdsmen attack and advised Danjuma to abhor what could lead to violence in the land.
But, before we begin to crucify Danjuma, has the Federal Government done enough to stop the killings by herdsmen? All that this government does as far as the herdsmen attacks are concerned are to pay lip service.