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IPOB: Miyetti Allah Should Be Proscribed Too – Soyinka




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Prof Wole Soyinka

Nobel laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka has questioned the decision of the federal government of Nigeria to proscribe the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) while the Miyetti Allah group is not.

According to Soyinka, the inciting statements made by some leaders of the Miyetti Allah group and the threat against other citizens of the country calls for the attention of the government.

He made the submission during a chat with Channels Television in a pre-recorded program which airs every Monday.

According to him, if IPOB can be outlawed for pursuing a secession plan, then the Miyetti Allah cattle group should also be banned for its roles and unguarded statements in the frequent farmer-herders clashes in the country.

According to the literary icon, the government needs to be more strategic in handling the security challenges ravaging the country.

Soyinka questioned statements credited to some officials of the Miyetti Allah group suggesting he wants to repeat an ethnic history of conquest against some other regions in a sovereign nation.

He said; “My temperament does not accept that anyone should chase me out of my God-given earth. So, it’s a temperamental thing as well.

“The idea that you can unleash terror on me because you want my little patch of territory or you want my soul, that is you want to subjugate me, you want to turn me into a slave. Well, I would sort that out first.

“And then I’ll make up my mind whether I want to leave. So each outrage, unfortunately, has the opposite effect. Whether the outrage is taking place in Benue, in Kaduna, or is taking place in Owo. Or whether it is taking place right here on the (Ogun state) border – we’ve been subjected also to this lunacy, of the subjugation mentality which some minority people hold. And I find it very difficult to accept to be chased out of my own entitled portion of the earth.

“Many people just either do not know history or do not understand the purpose of history. And then there’s a different group also who are very selective about history; they know how to distort or misuse history.

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“Take for instance when the incursion of the Fulani herdsmen began, and the Miyetti Allah. Their spokesman said, I think it was in Borno, we once ruled this place, and we can take back our land anytime we want. I remember that statement; I’ve never forgotten. In the midst of the trauma of these people, somebody comes gloating and then citing selective portions of history. I said this person should be arrested and locked up, who says he wants to repeat his history of conquest – he’s admitting either knowledge, before or after, or support, anyway. Isn’t there anything like hate speech anymore? Why are you proscribing IPOB without proscribing Miyetti Allah?”