A socio-cultural group, Kanuri History and Unity Forum, an Jigawa based body has called a former Commissioner of Information in Borno State, Mr. Inuwa Bwala to desist from what they called “his antics that fuel hatred between senior Kanuri men and leaders”, reminding the ex-commissioner that “he is the stranger in their midst”.
The group, engaged in the collation and documentation of history of Kanuri-speaking people in Nigeria and promoting unity amongst them,said it was speaking in respect to feud being re-enacted between two of their kinsmen, Governor Kashim Shettima and Ex-Governor Ali Modu-Sheriff, which they alleged is being sponsored by Mr. Inuwa Bwala through a newspaper he set up that has been spreading lies against Shettima and promoting Sheriff and as a result, breeding hatred between them.
National coordinator of the group, Abba Kirikasamma, said, in a statement, that “we had quietly worked underground some weeks back, using people that succeeded in cementing relationship between two of our senior kinsmen, His Excellency, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff and His Excellency Kashim Shettima. Just few days ago, we got a copy of one unknown newspaper, called National Trail, which published series of arrant rubbish and cheap lies against Shettima’s government in Borno, while in the same edition, the newspaper wrote glowingly of Sheriff.
“On our enquiry, we confirmed that Bwala, who was recently sacked by Shettima and who is clearly disgruntled, is the owner of the National Trail; and he is close to Sheriff.
“It is easy for anyone to assume that Bwala published the story with Sheriff’s consent. But from our investigation, Sheriff was not even aware of Bwala’s divisive actions.
The group emphasized that it is not interested in what Bwala wrote or how he decides to settle scores, “since Gov Shettima is capable of defending his purposeful administration; but our major concern is that Inuwa Bwala, who, is a strange person in the midst of these kinsmen who are from the same Borno Emirate, is causing hatred between them and this is against the philosophy behind our forum.
“These two leaders have come a long way and Bwala will hardly succeed in permanently dividing them. We are aware that some people with political aspirations are trying to use one of the leaders so that they can be able to get tickets in a political party to contest elections. They know they can’t stand on their own unless they lean on one of the leaders. But in pursuing ambitions they should not further divide our kinsmen”, it stated.
“The Kanuri have suffered so much since the unfortunate emergence of Boko Haram. Many of our kinsmen have been killed and some bad eggs are even branding us wrongly. This is why we created this forum two years ago to enhance unity between our kinsmen in Borno, Yobe, Jigawa, Nasarawa, Gombe, Bauchi, Plateau, Adamawa and host of other places.
“We have hundreds of years of history captured in old archives but we need to document our recent history, people, leaders, our successes and challenges so that we change the notion being spread with regards to the Boko Haram.
The group further implored Bwala to stop fueling the embers of hate between two brothers as “he will be put to shame when they reunite. Blood is thicker than water, he should allow us work for the unity of Kanuri people, he should settle his scores without making our kinsmen hate themselves” the group said.
The group said it was planning series of programs that will start with a National Conference of all descendants of Kanuri in Nigeria to discuss issues concerning them and chart a way forward while it was also working of volumes of compilation on Kanuri people in Nigeria.