by Farouk Martins Aresa,
Cattle grazing should not be a cross country menace across West Africa with Fulani’s philosophy that only God owns land. No ethnic group does in this century; because they only provide a marginal amount of Africa’s meat supply. It is about time their masters who are the real owners of the cattle measure up. They either provide modern facilities to feed their cattle where they are or face massive outrage in each of these countries treating them as cross-country terrorists.
The appeasement of granting grazing rights on properties that do not belong to them deprive the owners their wish to use their land as they see fit. It is myopic, dense and opportunistic. One would expect better cerebral solutions from the Schools of Agriculture in the universities and colleges of any country. Are they going to each country to negotiate land or just creating attraction for other Fulani into one privileged country until they run out of grazing land again?
Another philosophy within Fulani is that the life of a cow is more precious than that of human. If that philosophy is limited to their communities, as if that is not bad enough, extending it to their hosts in each of the country they invade raises a moral problem apart from economic and precious loss of lives. It becomes a clash of cultures, religions and laws.
The Hausa in Nigeria have been dominated by Fulani for over a century now. Hausa are proud people with their own indigenous civilized way of life and religion that ruled some of the Great Empires of West Africa. Today Hausa children of kings and queens are most of the impoverished talikawa in West Africa. Generally spread but mostly prominent in Nigeria as Fulani dominate the Hausa. Unfortunately, Hausa have taken to the philosophies and religion of their captors.
Indeed, any Hausa that does not claim a lineage to Fulani, can neither become a religious nor a political leader. So, no matter how dark skin or African they are, their ultimate goal in life is to emulate the Fulani and pledge allegiance to Saudi Arabia like their master. But, they are not that different from African Christians that pledge allegiance to Christian, Canterbury or Pope as some even claim they are the Africa lost tribe of Israelis. Yet each argue about who are converts.
This background is important to understand the mentality of Africans when they convert to a religion that has no foundation in their culture other than to receive order from Mecca, Rome or Jerusalem. So when Fulani claim that only Gods owns the land and the life of cows is more precious than that of a man, you must understand where the Hausa charlatans came from.
The owners of the cows are their oppressors that keep them uneducated so that they would not make demands from their selfish leaders. Their leaders are rich and they fat on talikawa that worship them like gods. The intention of their leaders is to use them as foot soldiers to accomplish their wish of acquiring other people’s land. Whenever their grazing cows destroy farms and settlement and the people complain, they get tacit support from their oppressors.
The homeless have little to lose in violent clashes with hosts except their cows. Nobody in this day and age roam cross country grazing cattle as a profession. Actually, some have branched out into farming, motorbike hawkers and others have moved up by going to schools. But their oppressors prefer them as cowboys rearing cattle across the countries. It keeps them down and ignorant, they cannot ask for better jobs because they are away from home most of the time.
This is what is going on in Nigeria as well as other countries. The difference in Nigeria is that Fulani have used their Hausa number to their advantage. As mentioned above, Hausa make up the majority of the talikawa. They are forced to leave home and if they cannot farm or rear cattle, they become beggars on the streets all over Nigeria. Only few of them can afford stable homes or houses. So they move from street to street or congregate in open areas turned slums.
Most of them were peaceful apart from the begging harassment on the streets. But lately, they are growing wings by becoming armed robbers’ watch-out dogs, easy recruits as charlatans and thugs. In a country where little provocation results in ethnic clash, police on civilians over N20, soldiers on police over right of way and lack of respect or distinction between area boys and omo-onile. If it’s not Boko Haram, the world most violent terrorist militia, it’s Fulani the fourth.
We have lost most of our Hausa brothers and sisters to Fulani extremist religious fanatics and they are ready to lose their lives or take others’ lives by these philosophy and religion. This is why they think they have a God-given right to raise cattle lives above that of human. So anyone in their way, is subject to any force or punishment up to and including death. Just to enforce these “law” and philosophy Fulani gave them and ready for terrorists backup across West Africa.
Fulani are minority in every country. They must convert Hausa into their belief and philosophy. If they feel they are offended anywhere, they all usually rise up to prevent their limited number from extinction. Most of their hosts know this about Fulani and they try as much as they can to tolerate them. However, Ghana, Chad, Niger and other countries have had enough of their terror threats since it spills into lawlessness. Terrorist and bullies must be confronted head-on.
Just as they have a low mark, level or at the brink of triggering unreasonable violence; some of their hosts exercise low tolerance in return by subduing them. If they feel that they have been offended, they react viciously and if they are checked, they call for cross-country backup. This is why countries are fed up with them, calling on local militias to put down their aggressions.
No African religion force itself on others, the beauty comes from willingness of others to love and accept the culture so much that they want to convert. Indeed, The Yoruba philosophy had warned that “God forbid them from being taken by religion that is tainted by madness.” Olorun ma je k’a gba were me sin”. This is why Yoruba within the same family; “Santeria” different religions from home, all the way to Cuba, and would swear by all those religions, but not theirs.