Ethnic cleansing of Fulani Pastoralists, Sardauna Local Goverment,Taraba State, Nigeria.
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In June 2017, Fulani pastoralists were subjected to the most intense, horrific, babaric and savage ethnic cleansing over three days leading to killing of more than 700 Fulani pastoralists and about 300 missing. The ethnic cleansing lingered on for the rest of the week. Even after a week, the Guardian Newspaper quoted a parliamentarian confirming that further killings happened in the village of Hainaare. It was organised and perpetrated by the Mambila tribal militia, who were incited by powerful elements in Sardauna local government and Taraba state government as the survivors narrated with audio evidences. The barbarity of the Mambila tribal militia could not spare children and pregnant women. The victims and their houses and property were then looted and burnt. In order to obliterate livelihoods of the survivors, they Mambila tribal militia matcheted cattle and pushed some from cliffs. The Mambila tribal militia also posted sentries at the border with Cameroun republic to prevent the initial survivors from escaping to ensure total annihilation.
The killings went on for three days without the Taraba state government doing anything only to make a callous statement against the victims letter. The Federal Government of Nigeria sent a high ranking general of the army who described the babarity of the killings worse than Boko Haram. However, no investigation was done up till now to arrest those that incited and perpetrated the ethnic cleansing of the Fulani pastoralists. The irony of it is that survivors have photographic and audio evidence of the atrocities. This is also the fourth major attempt to exterminate the Fulani pastoralists from Sardauna Local Government of Taraba state of Nigeria by the Mambila Tribal Militia.
The response of the Taraba State Goverment was biased and rather callous. The put up a committee that excluded Fulani pastoralists and the first action of the committee was to call the survivors of the ethnic cleansing to come and show their certificates of land occupancy! This is despite the fact that Taraba State Government refused to help the survivors in this suffering and tragedy. The Taraba State Government also enacted an obnoxious,vexatious, callous and discriminatory law called anti grazing law, which is worse than apartheid and is infact a crime against humanity and cruelty against animals. It is meant to exclude Fulani pastoralists from pursuing their livelihoods, which they have done for millennia. It was also made to disintegrate the society.
Survivors are now scattered and languishing in anguish, homelessness, poverty, hunger and psychological trauma allover the towns in Taraba and neighbouring Adamawa states of Nigeria as well as in neighbouring Cameroun Republic around the towns of Banyo and Labbo Sambo. What an atrocity! A once peaceful and prosperous Fulani pastoralists ( who never depended on the governments) of Sardauna Local Government have being subjected to ethnic cleansing and decimated because the powerful Sardauna Local Government and Taraba State Government officials hated them for their ethnicity, wealth and they also want to take over their cattle ranches.
The callous indifference by the various levels of Governments to the ethnic cleansing has emboldened another tribal militia called Bachama tribal militia to engage in ethnic cleansing of Fulani pastoralists in neighbouring Adamawa State of Nigeria. One day in November 2017, the Bachama tribal militia engaged in unprovoked massacre of more than 50 Fulani pastoral children and women when their men went out for cattle grazing.
In conclusion, there is need for the UN to investigate those who incited and perpetrated ethnic cleansing of the Fulani pastoralists in Sardauna Local Government of Taraba State of Nigeria because it was a crime against humanity to exterminate human beings and their cattle. It will also prevent it reoccurring. There is ample recorded photographic, audio and documentations with survivors.
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