Today, violence has taken the lead in all parts of Nigeria. There is no State where violence has not rooted deeply. This unfortunate turn of event has shattered the historical amity that existed among people. The continued escalation of violence in different parts of the country has indeed made the essence of peace a mirage. This wanton killing is really alarming, the way and manner in which innocent souls are wasted on daily basis calls for a serious concern among Nigerians.
Look at the way people are being massacred every day. Yet, the people in authority pretend as if all is well and nothing is happening. We must not forget that when a hunter does not understand the steps of a lion, he may end up in the stomach of a lion. A day will surely come when nemesis will catch up with those fueling these crises. Articulating on this, Professor Umaru Pate of Bayero University, Kano once said that “one of the notable causes of crises today is shadow source of crises, where people who are the major instigators are ignored and the spotlight placed on otherwise innocent people as scapegoats.
The way Benue people are swimming in tears every day is very painful and pathetic. From January down to June 2018 alone, the number of innocent souls ravaging the State will ever remain a misery in the minds of Benue people who lost their loved ones as a result of these killings. Imagine turning women into widows when they are not prepared, imagine parents loosing sons and daughters just like that, imagine seeing able bodied youths whom should be entrusted with the affairs of this nation been wasted. For how long should we keep mourning?
Few days back, a fresh crisis erupted in Barkin Ladi in Plateau State where shootings lasted for hours, leaving many people dead. Instead of the crisis to abate, it is rather spreading fast across several villages. No place in Nigeria is safe today except the Aso Rock where security is mounted and planted forever. I cry out for this country, if we are really going this far. A country where the lives of animal is superior to that of human beings, a country where the less privilege in the society languishes in penury and die a miserable death.
I think Nigeria must not go the route of countries like Sudan, Northern Ireland, Somalia to fight a fratricidal civil war first before sitting down to talk. Let us all sit down and talk now that we are still in our senses. Let us come together and see how we can stop this circle of violence in our dear country. For how long can we sit and fold our hands to watch innocent souls disappear just like that? Politicizing events like this will not take us to the promise land. We must forget our differences irrespective of our tribe, religion, economic status or even political affiliation. We must stop this blame game that is accelerating this circle of violence in this country.
We must dismiss this notion of my families are not involved, my religion is not affected; it has nothing to do with my political members if not, Nigeria should be ready for a full-blown war. This is not a prophecy of doom but the way these crises are developing is foreboding. We must come together as one Nigeria and say no to this circle of violence in our dear country. A stitch in time saves nine. We must unite to combat security challenges.
Aondover Eric Msughter, Department of Mass Communication, Bayero University, Kano