Several Nigerians are seriously disturbed by the threat issued by some Northern youths against Igbos living in the North, giving then an ultimatum to vacate where they live in the North for their home states within the next three months. Ordinarily this would have been ignored as perhaps utterances of excited and misguided youths. However, the history of violence in the North has shown that violence is usually preempted by the youths. Nothing can and should be left to chance.
Unfortunately this nation and its people have been victims of too many mindless tribal and religious and sectarian violence, where a group would decide to unleash brutishness against another, and sadly, and usually without any repercussion from the Law. Over many decades, lives and properties have been lost to such mayhem. We are still grappling with the menace of the herdsmen who prefer to carry AK-47 instead of the usual shepherds’ staff.
Nigeria is a Republic and every citizen has an inalienable right to live where he or she decides. If a Hausa family wants to live in Shagamu, they should be able to do so freely and lawfully without any molestation. If an Igbo family has chosen Makurdi to live, it should be without any let or hindrance. Should a Yoruba family decide that their next address is somewhere in Nsukka, it should be without any fear. The Constitution and our laws recognize and permit this. In many parts of Nigeria, millions of non-natives have lived and worked for generations in several places, and still do. Indeed, what is today the National Youth Service Corp was designed to make Nigerians mix and cohabit with other Nigerians so that as true brethren, we can grow together, supporting one another and the dream of One Nation. Do the miscreants threatening the Igbos know that so many northerners live in the south east and other parts of Nigeria without anyone threatening or harassing them?
And this is a call to the security services. A threat such as just been issued to the Igbos should not be taken lightly. It should be promptly investigated and if found to habourthe minutest substance, should be neutralized immediately and those behind it brought to law. People should know that it is illegal and wrong to constitute themselves into sources of danger to others.
And it would be unfair to leave threatened people unprotected, but expect them to fold their hands and act lawfully when their lives and property are endangered. It should also be noted that while few love violence, every man and woman has a right to protect himself and herself, as self preservation is one of the laws of nature. Plus, no one has a monopoly of violence. This is why the American Constitution allows and permits every American and even non-Americans living there legally to bear arms for protection. Since Nigeria has not developed to this stage, then the responsibility belongs to the security services to ensure that people who are potential victims are protected.
It is time to bring an end to these things. ITS TIME TO BOTTLE THIS GENIE.