When former Zamfara State Governor, Sani Yerima, now a Senator, came up with Sharia law in 2000, which was quickly embraced by most state governments in the North, many people did not take it serious. Even President Olusegun Obasanjo who was then at the helm of affairs did not understand the enormity of the crisis on hand when he described it as “political sharia”, which would “soon fizzle out”.

It was however the inimitable late Professor Ali Mazrui who saw beyond the veils and said that Sharia was a protest by the North against political power shifting to the South, in the person of President Olusegun Obasanjo.

According to Mazrui, “Ever since Olusegun Obasanjo became President in May 1999, some predominantly Muslim states in the Nigerian federation have taken steps towards implementing the Sharia in their own states, although the country is supposed to be a secular republic. This has caused consternation among non-Muslims in Nigeria…

“Many different reasons have been advanced for the rise of Sharia advocacy and Sharia implementation in Northern Nigeria. One explanation is that the Nigerian federation is getting more decentralized, and part of the decentralization is taking the form of cultural self-determination…

“Another reason is to regard it as a political bargaining chip. The North is losing political influence in the Nigerian federation, it is asserting new forms of autonomy in preparation for a new national compact among the contending forces which Indirect Rule helped to demarcate”, Mazrui deposed.

For long, the Muslim North had held political power, but when Obasanjo became president in 1999, they were not only uncomfortable about power shifting to the South, but they also particularly resented being ruled by a Christian “infidel”. So, Sharia would have to be introduced to checkmate it.

Not long after, Sharia was transformed to Boko Haram, which is interpreted to mean “Western education is evil”, and which at first, was targeted at Christians and security agencies, and also aimed at making the government of President Goodluck Jonathan, a Southern Christian, “ungovernable”, until it engulfed almost the entire country, and affecting even those who stoked the fire.

Now, Boko Haram has become an albatross, impregnable. It cannot be defeated, while those behind it cannot be unmasked. Boko Haram has become a powerful masquerade, while the sponsors have remained unknown. The reason is because Boko Haram is serving a hidden agenda. Boko Haram is now strengthened by the so-called Fulani herdsmen who wield AK 47 rifles, and together, they are holding the country at its jugular.

Thus, when some prominent people in the know want to seriously talk about Boko Haram and Fulani herdsmen, and to try to unmask them, and why they have not been defeated, the Northern Fulani Islamic fundamentalists will become jittery and uncomfortable. They will rise to their feet, to fiercely attack any of such people, to tear them to pieces.

The other day, former President Olusegun Obasanjo stirred the hornet’s nest when he stated that Boko Haram was no longer about lack of jobs for the youths, but a full blown “Fulanization of West Africa, Islamization of Africa and global organized crimes”, he was almost torn to shreds by the frontrunners of Fulani Islamic establishment who understood the game, including some of his very close political associates.

According to Obasanjo, “It is no longer the issue of lack of education and lack of employment for our youths in Nigeria which it began as, it is now West African Fulanization, African Islamization and global organized crimes of human trafficking, money laundering, drug trafficking, illegal mining and regime change”, he said, stating that the “twin evils of Boko Haram and marauding cattle herders were initially treated with kid gloves”.

Obasanjo had hardly ended his speech when a volley of attacks was hauled at him from all corners of the North, with some people calling him all sorts of names, including being a “confusionist”, a “religious and ethnic bigot”, etc.

According to a former Governor of Jigawa State, Alhaji Sule Lamido, a political ally of the former President, Obasanjo should withdraw the statement credited to him. “Please Sir, don’t let your disappointments with sitting Presidents turn you into a bigot”, he advised.

For former Governor of Kaduna State, Alhaji Balarabe Musa,”Obasanjo is being mischievous because he knows about Boko Haram more than any average Nigerian”, while Junaid Mohammed, a Second Republic lawmaker, what Obasanjo said was a lie. He “wants to set the country on fire”.

For the past four years since the present administration came on board, they told us that they were fighting Boko Haram, with thousands of precious lives lost and billions of naira wasted in procuring arms and ammunition to fight the insurgents, yet Boko Haram still remains invincible and their sponsors unknown. At the same time, the Fulani herdsmen have continued to rampage everywhere, and yet not one single of them was arrested, much more prosecuted.

We believe that Obasanjo was not kidding, nor was he running his mouth when he told us about what he knows was the true Boko Haram agenda. As a former Head of State and retired Army General, Obasanjo is in a vantage position to see behind the veils, and he is also courageous to speak the truth as he knows it.

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