Nigerians will suffer if Fulani go on strike for a week – National Women Leader, Miyetti Allah

Hajiya Baheejah Mahmood, from Azare in Katagum Local Government Area of Bauchi State, is the National Women Leader of Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore, a Fulani socio-cultural association. In this interview with newsmen in Bauchi, she spoke on a number of issues affecting the Fulani; the controversial Rugga settlement introduced by the Federal Government. Ishola Michael brings excerpts of the interview.

In your opinion, who do you think is Fulani? What are they known for?

A Fulani is a courageous, self-reliant, fearless and shy person who can be considered an introvert. The Fulani man does not interact and mingle so much with people of other languages and cultures. He prefers to be alone or with his animals or among his kith and kin. He feels intimidated with the presence of other people who he does not know, around him. Despite these though, the Fulani man is a sociable person who like a lot of fashion and fashionable dressing in multi-colored attire. I consider the Fulani man a very enterprising and thorough person, tending to his herd every hour of the day and going in search of grazing lands to wherever the search might take him. The typical Fulani man is very straight forward and honest but will not stop at anything to defend himself, his family and herd against any predators; human or wild animals.

Hajiya Baheejah Mahmood, from Azare in Katagum Local Government Area of Bauchi State, is the National Women Leader of Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore, a Fulani socio-cultural association. In this interview with newsmen in Bauchi, she spoke on a number of issues affecting the Fulani; the controversial Rugga settlement introduced by the Federal Government. Ishola Michael brings excerpts of the interview.

In your opinion, who do you think is Fulani? What are they known for?

A Fulani is a courageous, self-reliant, fearless and shy person who can be considered an introvert. The Fulani man does not interact and mingle so much with people of other languages and cultures. He prefers to be alone or with his animals or among his kith and kin. He feels intimidated with the presence of other people who he does not know, around him. Despite these though, the Fulani man is a sociable person who like a lot of fashion and fashionable dressing in multi-colored attire. I consider the Fulani man a very enterprising and thorough person, tending to his herd every hour of the day and going in search of grazing lands to wherever the search might take him. The typical Fulani man is very straight forward and honest but will not stop at anything to defend himself, his family and herd against any predators; human or wild animals.

In your opinion, who do you think is Fulani? What are they known for?

A Fulani is a courageous, self-reliant, fearless and shy person who can be considered an introvert. The Fulani man does not interact and mingle so much with people of other languages and cultures. He prefers to be alone or with his animals or among his kith and kin. He feels intimidated with the presence of other people who he does not know, around him. Despite these though, the Fulani man is a sociable person who like a lot of fashion and fashionable dressing in multi-colored attire. I consider the Fulani man a very enterprising and thorough person, tending to his herd every hour of the day and going in search of grazing lands to wherever the search might take him. The typical Fulani man is very straight forward and honest but will not stop at anything to defend himself, his family and herd against any predators; human or wild animals.

On the flip side, what benefits come to the Fulani from the government and people of Nigeria?

The Fulanis as a people gain next to nothing from the government of the country. Because they are mostly on the move, the Fulani’s do not benefit from the provision of basic amenities such as schools, hospitals and roads. They hardly know the importance of infrastructural items such as electricity, tap or borehole water and bridges. In fact, the Fulani only “buy into” infrastructural and economic development programs that are targeted at some other population, but not those targeted specifically at them. Before a program is designed specifically targeting the Fulani, thousands may have been developed for the “regular” population. No one thinks about them and their welfare and those of their cattle, despite the huge direct and in-direct contributions they make to the employment creation drive of the government. Groups such as butchers, traders in cattle and other animals, traders in hides and skin, makers of leather shoes and bags; and yoghurt-producing companies all depend on the animal product of the Fulani.

What the Fulani need is a kind of public/private partnership (PPP) arrangement with the government to boost the production of the animals and their products. For example, if the Fulani should decide not to bring their livestock to the market for one week, all Nigerians will then know and appreciate their contribution to the economy and the well-being of Nigerians.