Professor Wole Soyinka has bared his mind on the state of the nation. The noble laureate who spoke at the United Bank for Africa (UBA) symposium, tagged; “Africa’s History Redefined: Our Past, A Path To The Future”, said;
“There is nothing wrong with former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s statement that Boko Haram and herdsmen have become a tool for Fulanisation of West Africa and Islamisation of Africa. Obasanjo’s ‘disappointment.”
“See that the government is not happy with the statement made by former President Obasanjo. Now, everybody knows me and Obasanjo, and at the same time, I think we should be very careful not to be too dismissive or even abrasive.”
“Obasanjo was calling for a meeting of stakeholders to tackle some of the very serious aspects of social malaise this country is undergoing. He was talking about kidnapping, talking about youth suicide and stating that it is about time, Nigerians across board, irrespective of ideology, polity, religion, sit down and tackle these issues immediately; and I will suggest that even more immediate.”
“This country is undergoing a horrendous descent into the abyss spiritually, morally, the whole system. We are watching a huge mass of people descend into a state of brutishness, the like of which we have not experienced in this country.”
“And so, if you go into the streets and you say Africa must unite, what the man in the street is going to say is Mr. Leader, will you get my people out of the kidnappers’ den first and then, I will come and talk to you about unity.”
“Right now, let me be real, the issue of Boko Haram is being debated in the Parliament in England; right now, as we are speaking. Well, should we just go to them and say don’t worry, we are being united; and all we have to do is surrender to Boko Haram.”
The Southern, Middle Belt leaders’ statement read: “The announcement came at a time the Federal Government has been acting as the information arm of Boko Haram and herdsmen by using the correct interpretation of the groups activities as attempt to ‘Fulanise’ Nigeria.
“We totally reject this insensitive decision of the government on the following fundamental grounds: “It smacks of hypocrisy and deception for a government that has in the last four years denied responsibility on behalf of the herdsmen for crimes they even owned up to, to now tell us it wants to set up a radio for them to address the same issues.
“Section 55 of the 1999 Constitution recognises English,Yoruba, Hausa and Igbo as languages in which the official business of the National Assembly can be conducted. There was no mention of Fulani, which is not a language most northerners even understand.
“Will it also set up radio stations for the officially recognised languages and the over 250 languages spoken in different parts of Nigeria? “We fear seriously that the proposed radio will become a weapon of spreading hate propaganda against other nationalities in Nigeria, given the kid gloves treatment with which the Buhari administration has handled the killings of thousands of Nigerians in the last four years.”
“We are aware of the genocide-aiding role Radio Rwanda and RTLM played in inciting ordinary citizens to take part in the massacre of Tutsis and moderate Hutus during the Rwandan genocide. ‘’From 1993 to late 1994, RTLM was used by Hutu leaders for spread of an extremist Hutu message and anti-Tusti disinformation by identifying specific targets and areas where they could be found and encouraged the progress of the genocide. “
In 1994, Rwanda Radio began to advance the same message by issuing directives on where to kill Tutsis, congratulating those who had already taken part . “Using the instrumentality of the Federal Government to set up a radio for herdsmen will throw a knife at the tiniest of the threads still holding Nigeria together. ‘’We, therefore, demand that the Federal Government perish the thought of a Fulani radio sponsored by government if it cares in any form about the corporate existence of the country.”