PASTOR SULEMAN AND THE FULANI HERDSMEN…what he did, and did not say

So the news of Pastor Suleman’s outcry against Fulani herdsmen has been going on for a while, and this is me about to talk about the whole issue as truthfully as possible.

Of course there has been several opinions, reactions, and views about the whole thing, most of them seeming angry with the man of God and what they have tagged a hate speech. Well not all humans would have the same opinion on an issue so it is not unexpected that there would be diverse views on this issue.

First of all, if you want to understand this whole drama and form your own candid opinion about it, you need to first leave the writings and news you have been reading and watch the live video of the pastor preaching. That way you can hear the man himself and know exactly what he did and did not say.

To watch the video, click here

I am going to be picking out his exact words as is seen in the video, and I would do a one by one analysis of his sentences, so that in the end we can all see which allegations against him so far are true, what he said, and what he did not say.

The allegations so far are:

  1. His speech is a hate speech against muslims
  2. He has called for a war/ is agitating for one
  3. He supports Biafra and their campaign for secession
  4.  He called on his church members to kill any muslim/fulani herdsmen they see

Now let me analyze his statements as briefly and as detailed as possible and draw out my conclusions, and then let you draw out yours. This analysis is going to be like analysing a piece of literature as the plot unfolds, so take a seat and pay attention.

The words in bold italics are that of Pastor Suleman from the video footage.

I received a call, and the person told me there was a plan to send fulani herdsmen after you…I said okay

This is obviously a tip off of a planed assassination attempt on the life of the preacher isnt it? or is there any other way to read this statement? This is the pastor being busy doing what he does and he gets informed of a planned assasination attempt on his life, and whatt is his initial resposne… he says ‘okay’

… the person called again and told me “they are going to run into the road like herdsmen, and your security would try to clear them off, when you come out, they would open fire”

There is more insight into how this attack is going to take place. “They are going to run into the road like herdsmen” if you pay attention you are going to understand this statement, and you would further understand that herdsmen, now mean two things.

herdsmen as cattle rearers, and herdsmen as attackers.

We understand that herdsmen (as attackers) are going to try to take his life, and their process of doing so is by pretending to be normal herdsmen(cattle rearers) who would block the road like they sometimes do with their cows, and the pastor’s security doing their job, would try to clear them off the road, and when it delays enough to bring the pastor out of the car, they would open fire on him. Do you have any other opinion on what this statement might mean?

…”if they don’t do that, they might bring them to come around church premises”

If you’ve not already noticed, you need to observe that pastor suleman is the target and not his entire church, and the man who is reporting this tale to the pastor explains that if the herdsmen don’t go with the earlier report (which can either be as a result of failed attempt or just change of plan) they would go with another strategy of trying to get him in the church. We do not know if they would kill just the pastor or his entire congregation along with him if they succeed, but what we know is that they would kill the pastor and I believe it is only logical to predict that his congregation would be victim of manslaughter too if this thing goes through.

And I told my people, any Fulani herdsmen you see around you, kill him.

Okay so this is where the controversy begins, and the outrage of people stem from, and I must confess too, once I watched to this exact place in the footage, I shuddered too. I mean the message seemed clear and direct, but don’t you think it is the mark of a mature minded person to be rational when observing things?

Well let’s skip all the talk and go back to our analysis. The pastor told his “people”…who are the people? Shouldn’t that be the first question to ask? Unlike popular report, the people in this context if you observe closely, can’t be his church members or the congregation. The church are the listeners, the people he is narrating a story to, so how can they possibly be the people he told? and if it was them, when did he tell them? If it was the audience he told, and was now addressing, he would have made statements like “and I told you people” or “I am telling you people” but no.

The audience are the mere listeners in this story, while the pastor informs them that he told “his people”.

Guessing based on all this, I can assume that the people would be his security detail.. We know it is not his family, because before then he has already stated that his wife is not aware of the news.

Is it out of place to tell your security to kill someone who comes after you? Their work is to protect you, and to remove immediate threats against you. That is what the security is there for isn’t it? We all know that the uprising between the fulani herdsmen, boko haram and Christians isn’t one that gives room for negotiations or pleadings. The fight is kill without mercy, and the better it can get from this is to to kill or be killed, but since Christian doctrine doesn’t teach attacking back in revenge, christians has been on the recieving side of the attack, because we all know that so far this murderers can’t be talked out of this.

Christianity doesn’t encourage going in for retaliation, but what happens when the firght is brought to your doorstep and you have what it takes to resist the slaughter? A man who is able to afford security protection, and who finds it reasonable to have one, what instruction should he give them?

I mean, for the herdsmen to come around the church, it means that they have brought the fight to his doorstep, and whatever he does is defense and not offense. Whatever he does is to stop them from doing what they are there to do, which is to kill him and most likely his congregation.

calm your raging hearts and understand that statement for what it is supposed to mean before it was taken out of context.

Be on high alert, pick out any suspicious activity and act fast, do not slack on your job, there is a threat on my life that needs to be foiled.

And you need to understand that when he means fulani herdsmen, he isn’t actually referring to that innocent herdsmen that is just rearing his cattles.  We have understood the fact that fulani herdsmen now have two meanings and it is only logical to know that any of the two can be what is used in this context. If you think he means even the innocent ones too, read on, I’m going to be proving to you that he didn’t.

And just to add; knowing fully well that perpetuators of this act are fulani herdsmen, it is in the human nature for self preservation, that any christian would automatically be on guard if he sights any fulani herdsmen around, knowing that there is a possibiltiy that it could be meaningg his death. I don’t see the crime in that.

I’ve told them in the church, any fulani herdsmen that enter and wants to pretend, kill him…

He told them in the church there…he is telling the church that he has told them (not the church members, but them who are obviously the guards on duty) that any fulani herdsman that enters the church and wants to pretend. What is the herdsman going to pretending about? the fact that he means well when he doesn’t ? yes. this is him telling his security to be on the lookout for herdsmen with ulterior motive, even if they try to hide it, the security should observe body language, gestures and mannerism. that is how you detect pretense. Don’t slack and give room for anybody to slip through the defense around the church. This is a man addressing a congregation that looks up to him as father both spiritually and physically, and you think it is wrong that he tells his children that he has them covered around the church, and that they can worship in peace without the fear of harm? or is self defense a sin?

Busy killing Christians and nothing is happening, we would kill them and nothing would happen

  1. Isn’t the question true? from boko haram to fulani herdsmen, what exactly has happened to quell this? As far as this issue is corncerned, nothing has happened until the killings are brought to an end by the federal government. they might be doing things, but until the results starts coming out positively, it is normal to say nothing is happenening. nobody is looking at the story line, everybody is looking at the result
  2. why should something actually happen if you kill someone that would have killed you if you didn’t shoot first? How would the defender of his live be faulted?

look at this statement in the context he has been speaking before now. The people under the lights here are the fulani herdsmen who are out to get him.

It is wrong if you suddenly decide to pick this one statement and then use it out of context and claim that he is referring to muslims or any random fulani herdsman, when all this while it has been obvious who he has been talking about.

Didn’t David kill Goliath?

Actually, didn’t David kill Goliath?? lol.

But on a serious note, if you don’t understand both the physical and spiritual symbolism of the victory of David for Isreal, then please don’t vent yet. Understand what Goliath signified to the Isrealites, and how he spent days intimidating, tormenting and harassing them for a while, before David responded. There weren’t any other option for Isrealites in the war. It was surrender to be annihilated, or defend against annihilation.

So you see, this is still about having two options. defend, or helplessly die when you have what it takes to defend.

Blessed are Christians who are persecuted… but then I don’t think God wants Christians to go about looking for persecution.

Christians are to play the victim not by choice, but by last resort and yet still choosing to cling to faith against the option of denial of their religion.

Many people are now widows, many are now orphans, because some people think they own power

No need to waste time on this. This reality cannot be faulted.

Are we Christians? Yes. Are we believers? Yes. But we can’t be widows and widowers

Truth. Christianity isn’t  synonymous with oppression neither is it with victimization.

now they are shouting Biafra wants to go, why won’t they want to go when the north think they own the country?

Isn’t this the pain of Biafra, the reason why they think secession is the best way out? The pastor stated what he believes is the truth, so why the anger at his statement? I didn’t see him supporting Biafra or encouraging them. I only see him understanding the reason why they are agitating for their own state, and aligning himself with their pain and dissastifaction.

Very soon south south would start their own

Everybody is entitled to make predictions from what they understand the current state of things to be. He didn’t call it a prophesy neither did he say it factually. Everybody does this. His shouldn’t be different.

212 in Kaduna are dead, nobody is prosecuted. Rivers state, few people died, there is a panel.

This is facts, do the comparison and make your descisions. Like I said earlier, what everybody looks at is the result. Nobodyis completely contented when the inspector general comes up to say that investigations are ongoing. What everybody wants to see is the outcome, the results, the arrests, and until this happens, everybody is entitled to their dissatisfaction.

They caught a Boko Haram member, before we woke up they said he had escaped, but the biafran agitator is still in prison, haven’t escaped.

Is this news not enough room for somebody to smell a conspiracy? He didn’t say whether he supports the visions of the imprisoned biafran agitator. All he did was to draw our attention to what he suspects to be foul play; foul play that comes from partiality,injustice and manipulations to favour a course over another. How does the arrested boko haram member manage to escape from prison, if not that there is something we are not being told.

I’ve overwritten and I’m going to be dropping the pen now, believing I have made my point. Let’s answer the questions

  1. His speech is a hate speech against muslims:

where is the hate biko? If there is anything you should call it, it is an angry speech which he is entitled to. And to think that the allegations are that his hate are against muslims? He never fingered Islam as the cause. And the place where he says that they are killing people in the name of a religion… Yes that is what this is; a religious war. And the Islam communtiy has been noted to have distanced themselves from the activity of the terrorists, stating that the killing isn’t part of their teaching.

2. He has called for a war/ is agitating for one:

This is already a silent war, so let us admit this fact. This is a war between peace and unrest, between light and evil, and just like other wars, one day one side would prevail. It is our duty and our prayer to make sure that the good side wins this war, because in this war, there has to be a winner or a compromise.

This isn’t a war between Christianity and Islam; look deeper to see this revelation.

Pastor Suleman didn’t call for any war, and I don’t see that. Nobody should cook up things and fix in this drama.

3. He supports Biafra and their campaign for secession

No. He knows where the shoe hurts, understands the biaftan pains and has seen their reasons for their struggle, however he never justified their struggle by their reason, neither did he in anyway support their movement nor encourage the movement.

4. He called on his church members to kill any Muslim/Fulani herdsmen they see

Not true, not true, not true.

This brings us to the end of this matter arising, and if you have read up  to this point, I appreciate.

I would desperately love to hear from you all on this issue, your comments would be extremely appreciated.

2 comments

I would love to know what you think