Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland, Iba Gani Adams, has petitioned the United Nations, warning of impending danger of disunity that awaits Nigeria should certain socio- cultural, ethno – religious and political problems remain unresolved.
He gave this warning in a letter titled: Avoiding a Replica of the Bosnian War in Nigleria, dated June 14,2022, addressed to Mr. Antönio Manuel de Oliveira Guterres, the UN Secretary General. It reads: Greetings to you from the more than 60 million Yoruba people in South-West Nigeria and across the world.
As you, and hundreds of millions of people globally, are aware, things are no longer normal in Nigeria. Dangerous and despicable things are happening in the world’s most populous black nation. What happened in the defunct Yugoslavia that led to the balkanisation of that country is becoming like a child’s play in Nigeria. Pitiably, terrorists moving from Northern Nigeria to the South are being embraced, encouraged and empowered by powers that be in Nigeria.
Your Execllency, globally, you are known and recognised as a statesman because you were Prime Minister of Portugal from 1995 to 2002 and as the ninth person to hold this title of UN Secretary General, you are the Number One diplomat in the world. You are a symbol of UN ideals and a spokesperson for the interests of the world’s peoples, in particular the poor and vulnerable among them.
I am raising-this alarm now because the effect of this dangerous trend may ultimately balkanise Nigeria and affect sub-sahara Africa. Similar alarm was raised in the defunct Yugoslavia and sadly, nobody put in check the pogromists, whose actions, led to the massacre in that geographical location.
This lackadaisical attitude by those benefiting from this national malaise led to the Bosnian War which began in 1992 and lasted until 1995. It was an international armed conflict that took place in Bosnia and Herzegovina between 1992 and 1995.
The varied reasons for the country’s breakup ranged from the cultural and religious divisions between the ethnic groups making up the nation, to the memories of the Second World War atrocities committed by all sides, to centrifugal nationalist forces. Obviously, the grave factors that contributed to the dissolution of Yugoslavia, leading to the recognition of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia (including the regions of Kosovo and Vojvodina) and Slovenia, are still fresh in memories of historians. In 1991 , Bosnia and Herzegovina joined several republics of the former Yugoslavia and declared independence, which triggered a civil war in 1992 that lasted four years.
About 100,000 people were killed during the war and over 22 million people displaced, making it, up until that time, the most devastating conflict in Europe since the end of World War Il in 1945. In May 1993, the UN Security Council took the bull by the horn by seeking justice against those who committed atrocities during the war.
The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) at The Hague, Netherlands was created and it was the first international tribunal since the Nuremberg Trials of 1945-46, and the first to prosecute genocide, among other war crimes.
During the trial, 161 individuals who committed crimes during the war in the former Yugoslavia, including Radovan Karadzic, and the Bosnian Serb military commander, General Ratko Mladic (Butchers of Bosnia), were indicted for genocide and other crimes against humanity.
Milosevic was later found dead in his prison cell in 2006. Your Excellency, I have gone down memory lane to alert you that a similar scenario must be avoided in Nigeria at all cost because the Yoruba in South-West Nigeria are being pushed to the limit.
The Fulani in Northern Nigeria are now engaged in a war of attrition all over the country. Ironically, Nigeria’s President is a Fulani. The Fulani have been fingered in abductions, kidnappings and killings in the North. Now, they are gradually moving down South and the danger is that people in the South are already determined to engage them. This might lead to a full scale war.
In the last few weeks, these Fulani terrorists have expanded their evil network. Deborah Samuel, a 200-Level student of Shehu Shagari College of Education, Sokoto, was killed and her body burnt by some blood-thirsty fundamentals because, according to them, she was guilty of blasphemy.
The killers are visible in a viral video seen by peace-loving people all over the world but the government only arraigned them for ‘disturbance to public peace’. Prelate Of Methodist Church in Nigeria, Rev. Samuel Kanu-Uche, was kidnapped by, according to the highly respected man of God, Fulani boys and they collected N 100 million cash arranged in five bags (about $166,000) before he was released.
Security agents are stationed near the location of the abduction but they did not move against the terrorists. Anglican Bishop of Jebba Diocese in Kwara State, Rev Oluwaseun Aderogba, his wife and their driver were kidnapped and the abductors demanded for millions of naira before their release.
The Chairman of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in Jos East, Plateau State and a Catholic priest, Rev. Father James Kantoma, was also abducted by Fulani terrorists. In a most wicked manner, Fulani terrorists wielding AK-47 assault rifles and explosives attacked the congregation at St. Francis Catholic Church in Owo, Ondo State, killing over 40 people.
The Federal Government has traced the killing to IS WAF, although it has not told Nigerians and family members of victims how it intends to arrest the perpetrators.
Another evil traced to religious fundamentalism was that of a prostitute, Hannah Saliu, who was killed and her corpse set ablaze at Alaba Rago, Lagos because she had the effrontery to keep the Holy Quran in her room. Those abducted in the Abuja-Kaduna train attack in March are still with the terrorists.
Just a few Of them have been released, It is unfortunate that government is begging non-state actors to stop kidnapping Nigerians. Crimes are committed everyday by these state-protected, gun-wielding kiIlers who are now moving to South of Nigeria to continue to unleash mayhem. It is generally believed that those in authority are helpless, complicit or both, Now, Nigeria is at the point of no return, showing all signs of a failed nation. Instead of tackling these atrocities by Fulani terrorists, government officials are busy planning and strategising for the 2023 general elections.
Something urgent must be done to avoid a final collapse of the country. Your Excellency, it seems the only language the Fulani understand is violence and people of South-West are ready for this.
The Yoruba are not cowards and will do everything legally possible to resist any attempt by Fulani terrorists to expand their territorial expansionist agenda to the South-West. It is clear the Federal Government has lost control ofthe situation because it can no longer keep its citizens safe, secure and protected.
This inaction on the part of the government and aggressive killing agenda of the Fulani are already affecting Nigeria’s economy, which is the largest in Africa. The way Butchers of Bosnia were left to commit atrocities for years before the United Nations moved against them, butchers in Nigeria are already on the rampage and something urgent must be done to stop them.
The repercussion of leaving them to continue to maim Nigerians, especially Yoruba, is better imagined. No part of Nigeria is safe again. The time for the United Nations to escalate this danger to a global concern is now.
Please; accept the assurances of my highest consideration. Gani Abiodun lge Adams, Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland.