The Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN), along with other Fulani cultural groups, has asked the president’s wife, Senator Remi Tinubu, to investigate the alleged exclusion of their members from the N500 million support offered to victims of the state’s various attacks and killings.
On Wednesday, the state chapter of the Jama’atu Nasril Islam (JNI) accused the state government of excluding Muslims from the N500 million support donated by the president’s wife, an allegation denied by the state commissioner for information, Musa Ashoms, who stated that the selection had nothing to do with religion or ethnicity.
It will be recalled that the First Lady presented a cheque for N500 million to Governor Caleb Mutfwang on Tuesday during her visit to condole with the people of the state over the recent killings and attacks in six local government areas, including Mangu, Bokkos, Barikin Ladi, Jos South, Riyom, and Bassa.
Each victim will receive a N1m gift to help them recover from the attacks.
However, in a statement issued by MACBAN‘s state chairman, Nuru Abdullahi, the group expressed surprise that the state administration would provide the list of impacted people without contacting them or including the names of their members who were affected by the crisis.
“We are surprised by the lopsided nature of the list of 500 families said to be victims of the recent round of crises in Plateau State’s six local government areas,” Nuru added.
“To our great surprise, when the Plateau State Government released the list of beneficiaries, there was no mention of Fulani.” But that didn’t surprise us because the government hasn’t been taking us along. Fulani suffered the most casualties in the recent Mangu Local Government massacre.
“From April to July alone, over 350 people were killed in the crisis, 515 people were injured, and 115 Fulani villages were destroyed.” In addition, nearly 15,551 cows were slaughtered. Aside from that, we have 23,515 refugees in various camps. A government that seeks to maintain peace should not have acted in this manner.
Garba Abdullahi, the chairman of the Gan Allah Fulani Development Association (GAFDAN), another Fulani socio-cultural group in the state, also criticized the list of recipients, claiming that the state government was biased.
“We are dismayed by the discrimination and lopsidedness displayed in the distribution of the money given by the First Lady, Oluremi Tinubu, to people affected by the recent crises on the plateau, particularly in Mangu Local Government Area,” he added.
“Despite the wanton loss of lives and property by our members, none of the Fulani made the list of beneficiaries.” We are forced to question why the Fulani are treated in this manner and are not considered human beings. This is federal government money, yet we are not eligible. We are requesting that the federal government investigate this matter and respond appropriately and quickly, according to the chairman of GAFDAN.
Meanwhile, the Plateau State Government has urged residents to keep calm following public outrage over the list of beneficiaries chosen to receive the president’s wife, Remi Tinubu’s, N500 million donation to victims of attacks in the state.
In a statement issued yesterday, the governor’s Director of Press and Public Affairs, Gyang Bere, explained that the fund was created to help those who have been impacted by the security challenges that have resulted in the loss of lives and property in several local government areas across the state.
“Once again, the Plateau State government and people express their heartfelt gratitude to Senator Oluremi Tinubu for her compassionate intervention.” We would want to state unambiguously that the narratives/list now circulating on social media are inaccurate and should be ignored. They are financed by individuals hell-bent on criticizing government initiatives and resolving to help victims.
“We would like to reassure the public that we are actively working in close collaboration with the First Lady’s office to ensure that financial assistance reaches the most vulnerable individuals who have been directly impacted by regrettable violence and communal attacks in our state,” he said.
It further stated that the government was working with a bank to open accounts for beneficiaries who did not previously have bank accounts in order to facilitate direct transfer of the monies to the designated recipients.
“You can be confident that the Plateau State Government is committed to maintaining transparency and accountability in this endeavour.” “The time has come to come together and build a prosperous Plateau,” he remarked.