In the wake of the recent killing of scores of innocent indigenes of Benue State by the so-called Fulani herdsmen, Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State was reported to have said that he would not run to Abuja if there was herdsmen attack in his state.
Fayose who summoned hunters to a meeting, at Ado Ekiti, Ekiti State capital, told the hunters to be on the alert for any attack by Fulani herdsmen attack and return fire for fire.
Fayose’s position may have been borne out of what he saw were the frustration and helplessness, which other governors with similar attacks in the past had faced when they rushed to Abuja to complain to the Presidency about the invasion of their territory by herdsmen.
In April 2016, for instance. when Fulani herdsmen attacked the sleepy town of Ukpabi Nimbo in Uzo Uwani Local Government Area of Enugu State, killed scores of people and destroyed several houses and property, Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, who earlier had put the Federal Government on notice of impending attack by the herdsmen but got no response, rushed to Abuja to complain to the Presidency about the havoc committed in his state by the herdsmen. Till date, not a single person has been apprehended, talk much prosecuted by the Federal Government for such heinous Criminal activity.
The other day, I was at Ukpabi Nimbo and saw the entire place completely deserted. Some of the few people who summoned some courage and stayed behind were living in fear and apprehension, claiming that they had been getting rumours of impending herdsmen attack. The only secondary school in the town had only three teachers around, while there was no student on sight.
For one to visit the town, he has to make arrangement with the police to accompany him. In such a hopeless and frightening situation, it is obvious that no economic activity will evet take place. Yet we have a government that claimed to have sworn to protect lives and property.
Governor Samuel Ortom was completely devastated when he ran to Abuja to complain of the herdsmen attack in his state. He said that he had earlier received security reports of impending attack and reported to appropriate quarters, but that nothing was done to forestall the attack. In his lamentation, Governor Ortom declared that the Federal Government had failed Benue State.
Some political philosophers, Aristotle in particular, had posited that the reason why men surrender their rights to governmental authority was for the sole purpose of protecting their lives and property, and that any government that failed to fischarge that responsibility had lost its right to exist and that its citizens would be justified in overthrowing it.
Since therefore the Federal Government of Nigeria could no longer guarantee the protection of lives and property of her citizens by allowing the Fulani herdsmen a field day to continue to rampage, maim and kill innocent citizens and destroy their houses and property, the only alternative would be for every state in the country to equally adopt the Fayose option and assume the responsibility for the security of its citizens.
Were that to be the case, then it would be “to your tent Oh Israel”, since the centre would have ceased to exist, which may degenate into anarchism.