As Fulani exceptionalism becomes entrenched at the highest levels of power and in the public imagination, their excesses are becoming a national disgrace of a morbid phenomenon that must be questioned and interrogated. The ugly pattern of disgusting display of animal rage from the privileged against the less fortunate Nigerians is becoming negatively Orwellian among some elected public servants.
As the boundaries of the unthinkable become normalised, we are now witnessing that power corrupts, but absolute, unhinged, and brazen power corrupts absolutely. Public decorum, dignity and humility has now been supplanted by a recourse to zoological behaviour from some of our supposed setters of national etiquette and acceptable decorum.
No idea has played a more seminal role in the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari than the Fulani doctrine of divine election, or born to rule, or being chosen. Since this doctrine is the cornerstone of his Fulanisation agenda, an average Fulani now considers himself privileged, fit only for the highest position in the land, above the law, recklessly violent, commanding, unrepentant and dismissive of all mitigation for equity, fairness, and justice.
The vision of reconstituting Nigeria as Fulani homeland has never been easy. There is always a nostalgic revival of hallucinatory effusion of Sir Ahmadu Bello, the late Sardauna of Sokoto, when, in a rush of morbid profanity said: “The new nation called Nigeria should be an estate of our great grandfather, Uthman Dan Fodio. We must ruthlessly prevent a change of power. We use the minorities of the North as willing tools and the South as conquered territory and never allow them to rule over us, and never allow them to have control over their future.”
Till date, successive Fulani Nigerian leaders have been reviving this memory of divine mandate, myths, lies and delusions. It continues to inspire hope of establishing a feudal Fulani nation on a scale that their ancestors could not attain in ancient times. Inasmuch as it appeared utopian, even quixotic when it was first proposed, it has continued to offer a Nietzschean challenge to carve a feudal-theocratic-Fulani state out of Nigeria, and in the process, change a destiny of nomadic cattle herding existence into a permanent homeland.
The animating power of Buharigarchy as constituted, watered, and manured is the violent demolition of federalism, the malevolent desecration of national character and the total appropriation of virtually all important public posts to Northerners. Muhammadu Buhari’s illogical aim is to circle the wagons around himself and create a Fulani echo chamber where the voices of Southerners are no longer heard in Nigeria’s national life. His panic to create an unadulterated, exclusionary Fulani government has now brought Nigeria to a cliff edge of catastrophe, confusion, tribal division, violence, and endemic incompetence.
Fulani embrace of lawlessness, violence, abuse of office, arrogance, misuse of the Nigerian security forces and having a square peg in round hole, could not be more explicit than the vulgar outrage of our prosecutorial time lord called Justice Danladi Umar, Chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal. On Monday 29 March 2021, the CCT chairman dropped all known elitist civility by slapping, kicking, beating and karating a commoner called Clement Sargwak in that famous Abuja haunt of the rich – the Banex Plaza! What was remarkable was the geo-ethnicization of Sargwak as “Biafran Boy” – an unwarranted, unjustified, and thoroughly prejudicial attempt to demonise Ndigbo as the powerless others.
You may recall that On May 11, 2019, in the same precinct of Banex Plaza, Senator Elisha Abbo, the misogynist from Adamawa, repeatedly assaulted Osimibibra Warmate. Before the klieg light of a stunned world, Abbo violated Ms Warmate’s human rights. There was a mass outrage against abominable Abbo who brought incipient dishonour to senatorial privilege. What is blighting the judicial landscape is the organic conflict in the dispensation of justice in Nigeria and the ongoing bastardisation of our legal canon where there is one rule for the rich and another rule for the poor.
We have sailed into the harbour of Orwellian reign of injustice where your place in the pyramidal pole will determine the kind of justice you deserve, no matter the weight of the evidence against your abuser. This observable paradox could not be more on your face than the judgement of Magistrate Abdullahi Ilelah, who, in Zuba, Abuja, dismissed the assault case filed by the Nigerian Police against the misogynist senator called Elisha Abbo. The so called “Biafran boy”, Mr Clement Sargwak, will not get justice despite the graphic details of his assault captured on video. It is going to end up as same repetition of what is now becoming a conventional ritual of miscarriage of justice.
What was at play in both instances was the raw display of exceptionalism in its cruellest form. Whenever we have a master race Fulani tribalist in power, whatever violent kerfuffle they unleashed, no court will convict them; no police will arrest them, no sanction will be imposed, no resignation will be allowed, and their permissive outrage must be tolerated with our resigned helplessness. The Fulani are now redrawing us all and making violence part of the Nigerian culture. Nothing could be more damning in the Western imagination than the zoological imagery of watching a Judge of Nigeria’s Code of Conduct Tribunal in a state of beastly violent assault on fellow Nigerian.
That is the gunk Nigerian society has sunk. Exceptionalism allowed the creation of Nigeria’s first government-backed, paramilitarised, and Sharia-driven outfit called Hisbah in Kano. But Amotekun in the South West was resisted to death. The ideology of supremacy has provided an average Fulani a fig leaf of legitimacy to control, dictate, threaten, and command. It has allowed them to brutalise, maim, and kill with impunity while the Nigerian police wilt with fear if the perpetrators happen to be Fulani. To the police, the victims are the perpetrators. Human rights abuses are justified under Fulani prerogative.
Iskilu Wakilu, the famous Igangan terrorist, invoked this doctrine of exceptionalism to unleash terror until he was caught by the courageous vigilantes of Oodua People’s Congress. It is the same belief in exceptionalism that allows Chairman of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN), Alhaji Muhammadu Kirowa, drives around Abuja like a warlord in a numberless SUV decked with its own gleaming crest of his association and complete with mobile police escort! United Kingdom has cattle breeders. But the permissible deviance of a primitive Kirowa will not be seen among more civilised British cattle breeders.
Identity Fulani politics, exceptionalism, master race doctrine and mass privileges among the Sahelian clan is paralysing, pulverising, and providing pretexts that is encouraging the violent cattle herdsmen to lay juridical claim to Yoruba lands in Western Nigeria. Fulani exceptionalism encourages the appropriation of other peoples’ land by driving them away through forceful occupation. It aims to obliterate the existence and hopes of other tribes.
The vexatious trope that all lands in Nigeria are Fulani eternal inheritance presupposes that they could justify any theft of land grab by arguing that their action is not expropriation, but the restoration of stolen lands to their Fulani divine owners.
Today, the Dangote Refinery, situated close to the Lagos Atlantic is Fulani exceptionalism and the fulfilment of Ahmadu Bello’s dream of the Fulani dipping the Quaran in the Atlantic! Would the Fulani allow a Yoruba or Igbo build such a humungous and monopolistic project in the North?
If the theft of Southern lands is justified through an archaic belief in exceptionalism and master race doctrine, then corruption and the emptying of the treasury by elected officials is also allowed under the ideologization of Fulani exceptionalism. Under extreme form of identitarian Fulani politics, a public office is a reward for the lifetime support of the official and his people to the services of the Fulani fiefdom. For instance, if a Southern Minister is appointed to administer the Customs or Aviation, the appointee can embezzle the funds of these ministries to the best of his ability and greed in return for his loyalty and total allegiance to the Fulani feudalism.
That is why our 1999 constitution legitimises and protects looting with an immunity clause that encourages a Governor to seize and loot state’s budgetary allocation so flagrantly and without any prosecution. Fulani exceptionalism encourages corruption to buy loyalty.
That is why Elisha Abbo and Danladi Umar could brutalise Nigerians are avoid prosecution. Fulani exceptionalism needs their loyalty. That is why APC Governors, Ministers, Senators and House of Rep members could embezzle any fund and walk about as free men. The Fulani hegemony needs their unquestioned loyalty. That is why our police officers will extort money at checkpoints and nothing will happen. The Fulani hegemony needs their loyalty. That is why our politicians are prisoners to Fulani loyalty. That is why Bola Tinubu will rather betray his people than betray his Fulani benefactors. That is why Godswill Akpabio walks around free. The Fulani needs his loyalty and that of his people.
Official stealing in the nether Fulani world is the legitimate entitlement of the holder of the public office in accordance with doctrine of exceptionalism. That is why Muhammadu Buhari regarded the monumental looting of Sani Abacha as entitlement. That is why he defended him and absolved him of corruption.
As Fulani exceptionalism continues to be challenged across Nigeria, the “chosen people” slowly but surely take on the hues of a ‘master race’. They begin to imagine that they have the power to legitimise their actions by merely willing them into existence. Fulani exceptionalism is then translated into Fulani superiority in all spheres of national life.
In conclusion, my deepest condolence goes to the untimely exit of Yinka Odumakin. He captivated me by his routine courage, tenacity, amiability, humility, and the undying desire to witness a properly restructured Nigerian entity defined by fairness, equity, justice, and prosperity for all the competing regions. Sleep well.