Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Faces of the Post-Election Murderers

In the last past four days, I have received reports of woes and worries from Northern Nigeria. From family, friends and colleagues, the story is the same: armed youths are burning houses, hacking down Christians, southerners and northerners who did not support or vote for former military dictator, Muhammadu Buhari. In Minna, Niger state, 50 Christian youth corp members were locked up in the Nigerian Christian Corpers Fellowship House and the house was set ablaze! These corp members are just fresh from the university.

But look at the faces of those doing the actual killing and burning ... They are very young teenagers who weren't even old enough to have voted. These are Almajiri beggars who are on Islamic and Arabic training. Without father or mother, without education or skills, without any chance of a meaningful today or hope of a bright future...they feed on leftovers and from garbage. It is thus easy to see why their lives and the lives of others mean nothing to them. You can't reason with them. They know very little, speak only Hausa and understand very little. To put it very charitably, the Almajiri is a creature who has been denied the right to become a real human being.

The Almajiri system of Arabic schooling has been described as deplorable. Yet, it cannot be controlled or abrogated. It provides a ready army of hungry and idle youths to politicians and religious fanatics bent on blood letting.

I hate this thought but it keeps popping up: In 2005, US Sub Saharan Intelligence Analysts and Futurologists predicted the possibility of the collapse of the Nigerian state within 15 years. Click here for the report of the analysts/futurologists. Fifteen years from 2005! Is anyone doing the math? If by 2015, Jonathan clinches a second term, we can only be sure of a worse massacre in the North. Maybe the process by which we may kiss Green-White-Green bye will then begin! Did anyone hear the call for a Sovereign National Conference in the papers? Maybe it's indeed time for Nigerians to sit and talk about Nigeria.

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