Insecurity is one of the challenges plaguing the Nigerian nation at moment and by extension the world. The society is so insecure right now that no one is sure of the next moment. Lives and properties are threatened to the extent that each day lived is now seen as a bonus. This is the exact situation in many parts of Nigeria as at the moment.
Gradually but sadly, the government has lost grip and today our society is overwhelmed by kidnapping, rape, banditry, religious extremism leading to bombing, herders attack, etc. Disgusted and frustrated by the situation which are clearly avoidable many have chosen to take their destiny in their own hands while others may have resigned themselves to fate.
Given the ethno-political leanings which affects how we live in the country and the lack of confidence in the federal government managed security architecture, groups along ethnic or geographical configurations have opted for measures to secure lives and properties in their own environment.
One of the major security challenges engulfing the nation is the attack of Fulani herdsmen all over the country. No part of the country is spared in the destruction of farm crops, rape, kidnap and killing of farmers by the Fulani herders. The body language of the federal government appears to encourage this because no arrests, prosecution and jailing of the perpetrators have taken place to act as a deterrents.
The menace of herders is quite provocative. Naturally, no human being will like to be humiliated and dispossessed of his valuables in his own land by stranger elements. At no time in the history of this country has the Fulani been more assertive, aggressive and violent in their attack of host communities perhaps riding on the fact that one of their own is in charge.
The recent attack and counter attacks experienced in the South West is a pointer that the menace is gradually taking root and may escalate to a higher level if not promptly checked at the moment. There have been series of herders’ famers clash in the South East as well leading to loss of lives and properties.
The South West of the Yoruba ethnic nationality took a very bold step instituting a local vigilante called Amotekun to check the invasion of their locals. This was after they terrorized and destroyed the farm of the former secretary to the government of the federation, Olu Falae. They also murdered the daughter of a Yoruba chieftain, Fasoranti.
While the South East governors were still indulging themselves in grammar and pussy footing, the Independent People of Biafra (IPOB) went ahead to form the Eastern Security Network (ESN) as a vigilante group to man the forests in Igbo land where the Fulani herders had made their abode as well as help in protecting our unarmed farmers who have been on the receiving end of the Fulani attack.
So much has been said about the reported prowess of the ESN which is quite commendable assuming everything said is right. It would seem that the IPOB boys are closing the gap where the governors have failed to act. They have received several knocks for failing to take concrete steps like the South West governors to protect their own.
News Echo wishes to express happiness that for the first time the IPOB is commending the South East governors for placing a ban on open grazing, an action which would put paid to the roaming of the herders and their cows all over the farms in the South East. It is our expectation that the commendation should go beyond appreciation to include a new rapprochement between the two groups.
This is in the light of the fact that both groups have been at daggers drawn with each other. We are urging the South East governors to explore ways of adopting or partnering with the ESN and seek ways to solidify the security arrangement that will guarantee the security of lives and properties.
We are aware that the IPOB and the governors are concerned with fighting and improving the welfare of the Igbo man. Their differences may result from the manner of approaching or achieving the same objective. Security is central to the achievement of anything without which nothing works.
News Echo appeals to IPOB and the governors including other South East leaders to abandon their differences and forge a common front to protect ourselves. They should recall an Igbo saying that ‘Ndu bu isi'(life is first)