In what observers believe is nothing but taunts and jeers directed at the a suffering citizens of Zamfara state, the President, Muhammadu Buhari called for the continuation of herdsmen attacks during his presidential campaign visit recently to the state.
Speaking in Hausa during the campaign, Buhari said: “Ina so kowa ya cika cikinsa: in ma fitina ce aje ayi” meaning I want everyone to be filled to capacity (with food) and then the insecurity challenge can continue.”
This was clearly an insensitive statement by somebody whose incompetence is what brought about the security challenge in the area in the first place.
This careless statement will be particularly difficult for the citizens of Zamfara state to stomach, because of the rate at which armed bandits and kidnappers have held the state captive for most of his reign without respite.
It is this state of insecurity that has rendered the citizens, who are predominantly farmers, from engaging in their farming activities thereby causing the food insecurity in most Zamfara households.
For Buhari to sarcastically make reference to him wanting them to eat to their satisfaction, some view it as the height of callousness.
Zamfara citizens suffer the most in this country. They get kidnapped when not in their homes and get killed when in their houses in droves like ants. Nowhere is safe in Zamfara. Thus, for a president to taunt them with food and security, instead of sympathizing with them is the highest form of irresponsibility.
To add salt to injury, the campaign council of President Muhammadu Buhari has said the comment made by Mr Buhari in Zamfara State was a “joke”.
President Buhari didn’t provide security to defend the citizens. He didn’t even go to condole families of victims, no words of condolences from the presidency but some very dry jokes.