By Farooq Kperogi
The arrest and detention of Nastura Sharif who led a PEACEFUL protest in Katsina to call attention to the serial, unpunished mass murders of his people by nihilistic “bandits” is yet another proof that the Buhari regime only takes people seriously when they are murderous.
The regime punishes people who dare to cry in response to the torment its incompetence unleashes on them but rewards and celebrates homicidal outlaws.
Since 2015, the regime has “rehabilitated” and “reintegrated” hundreds of “repentant” Boko Haram terrorists who have slaughtered thousands of men, women and children.
So-called bandits who indiscriminately murder innocents in towns and villages in the North are invited for “negotiations” and offered “amnesty” deals involving large sums of money.
But dare to “insult” Buhari and the incompetent, illiterate governors in the region or, worse, engage in a peaceful protest that calls attention to the incompetence of the government and you will be arrested and jailed.
On May 5, a 70-something-year-old Katsina man by the name of Lawal Izala whose emotions were inflamed after so-called bandits murdered his relatives and stole his cows was arrested and detained for “insulting” Buhari and Katsina State governor Bello Masari in a moment of anguish and frustration.
Recall that months earlier, Masari, who admitted this week that he has “failed” in his duty to protect his people, held “negotiations” with and gave millions of naira to the very people who murdered Izala’s relatives and stole his cattle.
And now leaders of a peaceful protest against the same “bandits” that the governor “negotiated” with at the cost of millions of naira are being arrested and detained. Are the “bandits” and the government in bed?
Government’s message is clear: if you want us to take you seriously, be a mass murderer.
If the victims of the unceasing ravages of “bandits” take the laws into their own hands and start retaliatory mass murders instead of “insults” and protests, watch to see the government invite them for “negotiations.”
They might even be “rehabilitated” and “reintegrated” into the military and other security forces—as is being done to Boko Haram terrorists now.
There can be no peace if government punishes peaceful agitators but incentivizes the bloodletting of mass slaughterers.