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Disband Fulani vigilante group now or all other ethnic groups will set up theirs, HURIWA tells Tinubu

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Sensing that there are subterranean motives to cause uprising, invade farming communities and capture lands of natives for grazing of cattle, frontline civil society organisation, the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), has asked President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to disband the just established Nomad Volunteer Vigilante Group launched in Nasarawa State.

This so-called national vigilante group by Miyetti Allah is an attempt to usurp the functions of the Nigeria Police Force which constitutionally, is the only legal policing institution in the Country by virtue of chapter 6, part 3, section 214 of the Nigerian Constitution of 1999, as amended which states that; “There shall be a police force for Nigeria, which shall be known as the Nigerian police force and subject to this provisions of this section no other police force shall be established for the Federation or any part thereof.”

Besides, HURIWA said it was unconstitutional that military Commanders and top police officers attended the public inauguration of the illegal vigilantes by Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore thereby giving it official imprimatur when the immediate past President Muhammadu Buhari unleashed the full weight of armed military forces drawn from Maiduguri in Borno State for the purposes of crushing a similar volunteer vigilante set up few years back by the Indigenous peoples of Biafra (IPOB) and till date, over 500 Igbo youths have been killed by the military in their hot chase of the Eastern Security Network members.

HURIWA recalled that the Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore Fulani Sociocultural Association launched the Nomad Volunteer Vigilante Group on Wednesday, comprising 1,144 carefully selected, screened, and profiled volunteers.

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The rights said the initiators of this vigilante which HURIWA suspect strongly may be armed and dangerous even though those weapons may have been concealed from public view, those who set it up said HURIWA, announced that the primary objective of this newly inaugurated vigilante group is to address various security challenges, including banditry, kidnapping, and cattle rustling, in Nasarawa State, the group has said.

Abdullahi Bodejo, the association’s national president, emphasised that the volunteer vigilantes would strictly adhere to the country’s existing laws during their operations.

Speaking during the inauguration ceremony in Lafia, Bodejo urged the volunteer vigilantes to work in collaboration with the Nigerian Army, the Nigeria Police Force, and other security agencies. This collaborative effort is intended to ensure a more comprehensive approach to security across the 13 local government areas of Nasarawa State. HURIWA said it is illegal and unconstitutional for herders to set up a vigilante whereas farmers, traders, teachers, clerics in Nasarawa State do not have similar privilege backed by a section of the armed forces present at the inauguration of the Fulani herders vigilante.

HURIWA in a media statement condemning the Fulani vigilante group also condemned the double standards manifested by the Nigeria Army and the Nigeria Police Force, and the federal government for backing the establishment of an illegal ethnic army to foist ethnic Fulani agenda all across Nigeria but the Federal government decisively crushed a similar volunteer vigilante set up in the Igbo speaking South East of Nigeria by a group the Indigenous peoples of Biafra and many innocent Igbo youths who are not even members of the ESN have been massacred by the Army, Police and DSS sent by the Muhammadu Buhari’s maladministration and is being sustained by President Tinubu’s government.

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HURIWA confirmed that the commissioner of police in Nasarawa State, Umar Nadada, represented by the assistant commissioner of police, operations, Abdulaziz Aliyu, commended the association for taking the initiative to establish its vigilante team.

Also, in a show of double standards by the federal government, the commander 177 Guard Battalion, Keffi, Lt. Col. Inuwa Bala, represented by Maj. M. A. Sani, provided assurances of the Nigerian Army’s support.

He encouraged the vigilantes to adhere to the rules of engagement provided by the association, ensuring a harmonious collaboration with formal security forces and preventing potential challenges in the execution of their assignments.

“HURIWA is aware and as we read from the report put up by the United State’s security think tank: Council on Foreign Relations, that when the Eastern Security Network was set up in the South East by IPOB, President Muhammadu Buhari got agitated and held marathon security meeting with the military service chiefs and the inspector general of police, Nigerian military sources confirmed that some troops were being moved from Borno State, where they have been engaged with Boko Haram and other jihadists, to the South East, to counter “bandits” and the regional separatist organization, the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), along with its security force, the Eastern Security Network (ESN).”

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Citing the report by Council on Foreign Relations of the United States of America, HURIWA recalled that since ex-president Buhari sent the armed military troops to the South East just as the Nigerian Army claims that; “the army and police have sustained increased casualties in the South East, so aircraft – including combat helicopters – will be “deployed to conduct massive raids” on the hideouts of “criminals” from the IPOB and ESN. Another source suggested traditional rulers, community heads, and chiefs could be arrested to warn them against “conniving with the agitators.” The police also announced the launch of Operation Restore Peace to confront the IPOB and ESN.”

HURIWA therefore called on President Tinubu to disband the Fulani vigilante or else all ethnic nationalities will henceforth set up their ethnic vigilantes and since the Nigerian Army and the Nigeria Police Force fully supported the Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore in the establishment of the private security vigilante which is just an ethnic army, then the Federal Government can’t stop the proliferation of ethnic armies all over Nigeria.

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