Monday 28 November 2016



Kajit JP meeting guests at the Flag-off

In a bid to report on the above titled event, the Foundation for the Move for Cognitive Justice has decided to write this report which merely mirrors the statement given to the Media personnel present or represented.

Declaring the event started, Mr Kamil Kemanci the Chairman, President UFUK Dialogue Foundation and former Registrar Turkish-Nile University Abuja, Nigeria.
This to us, was a historic event which ushers-in the era of a new level of consciousness in the quest to build a better world through Cognitive Justice.

Media matters were handled by Mr Reuben Buhari, former spokesman to Late Governor Patrick I Yakowa of Kaduna State, Nigeria, and media personnel in attendance or reflected on record via him were, among others thus:

1. Tega Nwaiwu: CHANNELS TV
3. Abdulgafar Alabelowe: THE NATION
4. Midat Joseph: LEADERSHIP
5. Luka Binniyat: VANGUARD
6. Andrew Ibidim Mshelia: outfit not indicated
8. Walter Uba: NUJ
9. Christiana Alabi: DAILY TRUST
10. Noah: THE SUN



TIME: 9.30 TO 2.00PM





In the quest for an equal, just, peaceful and a sustainable global society, Cognitive Justice was flagged-off/launched today in Kaduna state by the Foundation for the Move for Cognitive Justice.


Mr Reuben Buhari welcoming guests at the venue.
Cognitive Justice whose motto is ‘a better world is attainable’ seeks the attainment of an equal society through the fostering of effective peace building and human dignity mechanism in diverse communities, and for creating awareness/education on Cognitive Justice Peacebuilding (CJP).

The idea, according to the founder Dr Kajit J Bagu (John Paul), came up because of the problems afflicting the African Continent in particular, as well as the global South and the world.

He added that these problems are particularly the mass atrocities of Genocide, Ethnic Cleansing, Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes, as well as dehumanisation. Others include armed conflict, especially those based on ethnic and religious plurality, social injustice, inequality and the racism which makes some people seem inferior in the present world order, while others seem superior to others by virtue of identity.

Dr Kajit said the ultimate objective of Cognitive Justice is the equal recognition and treatment of different identities in democratic constitutional society, with the aim of fostering peace through the elimination of legal, political, institutional, structural, social and economic inequality of different identities, whether such inequality be direct or indirect, express or implied, visible or invisible, and whether contemporary or historical

At the launch held at the Arewa House Kaduna, Mr Kamil Kemanci, the President of UFUK Dialogue Foundation and former Registrar of the Turkish-Nile University Chaired the Occasion. He stressed the importance of dialogue as a peacebuilding strategy toward the attainment of a peaceful society.

Dr Kajit comparing notes with Mr Abdiel the Master of Ceremonies.
Dr Musa Usman Abubakar, the Sub-Dean of Law at Bayero University Kano (BUK) who also presented a paper on ‘the Prospects and Challenges of Cognitive Justice in Muslim Northern Nigeria’, said Cognitive Justice as a concept calls for recognition and respect of our differences, without any stint of inferiority or superiority in any society.
During the question and answer session of the programme, the issue of the continuous killings in the Southern part of Kaduna came up. It was the view of the people at the seminar that Cognitive Justice stands in a very good position to help in addressing the ongoing killings by playing a mediatory role and championing the framework for a plurinational democratic constitutional order as the antidote.

Part of the activities also saw the presentation of certificates to Cognitive Justice Peacebuilding (CJP) Ambassadors who had gone through a 6-week training.

YouTube Video of MCJ Flag-off: Certifications of CJP Ambassadors I

HIGH POINTS OF ACTIVITY AS WRITTEN BY CLEMENT N KULIYAK AND REUBEN BUHARI)- Distributed to the listed media outfits accordingly


THE FOUNDATION FOR THE MOVE FOR COGNITIVE JUSTICE was officially launched today the 22nd of November 2016, including the presentation of certificates to trained Cognitive Justice Peacebuilding (CJP) Ambassadors at Arewa House Auditorium, Rabah Road Kaduna state. The Master of Ceremonies was Mr Abdiel Kude.
Motto: A better world is Attainable.
The Cognitive Justice Banner proclaiming:  A BETTER WORLD IS ATTAINABLE!
Tributes in honour of Late Professor Steven A Nkom: Sir JWB
MISSION: To advance the attainment of an equal, just, pluralistic, peaceful and sustainable world through Cognitive Justice Peacebuilding (CJP).

The core values of THE FOUNDATION are Equality, Justice, Plurality, Peacebuilding and Sustainability.

The occasion served as an opportunity to further create awareness, education and enlightenment concerning the concept of Cognitive Justice and Cognitive Justice Peacebuilding.

A minute of silence was observed and a tribute paid to Late Professor Steven Adamu Nkom (Ahmadu Bello University Zaria), who was supposed to be the Keynote Commentator but passed-on (on the 16th of November 2016). Tributes were also paid by Sir JW Bagu (KSG, KSM, Sarkin Mallamai Moro’a) and Dr Zwahu KA Bonat a lecturer at the Department of History, Kaduna State University (KASU), after his biography was read by Mr Alphonsus Bako.

Mr Kamil Kemanci, the President of UFUK Dialogue and former Registrar of the Turkish-Nile University – Abuja who was the Chairman of the Occasion, made remarks on Peacebuilding in UFUK and the HIZMET Movement. While reflecting on Cognitive Justice, he opined that dialogue is the key to establishing peacebuilding and societies where everyone is happy. Dialogue is crucial in every case, in every means, and on every occasion. Unfortunately today on the earth, majority are in pains due to violent conflicts, he emphasized the need for dialogue of civilizations following the clash of civilization caused by religion and cultures. We have many tribes, languages and cultures. He said the concept of Cognitive Justice is a sure path to maintaining and sustaining peace, where people maintain their identities without rancour. There must be recognition and respect for all identities especially that these differences were not created by us. People always find reasons to clash, to fight and to kill… but a better world is attainable as stressed in the Motto of Cognitive Justice.
Mr Kemanci Delivering his message on Peacebuilding and in support of Cognitive Justice
Mr Kamil stressed that justice connects people in a very beautiful way, the character and personalities, including the practices that make the world a better place are virtues to imbibe and preserve. Identity politics have a way of making us act not like human beings, and in the process other people are dehumanized. The problems can be solved by dialogue and education to address the ignorance causing divisions, suspicion and violence. He concluded that the HIZMET Movement share similar ideals with Cognitive Justice and they would partner with and support the organization in any way they can for the attainment of a better world.


Speaking on Hismet Movement and Peacebuillding: Nile University Abuja Lecturer in International Relations.
Talking about the HIZMET Movement, a lecturer in International Relations from the Turkish-Nile University gave an inspiring talk where he emphasised the importance of respecting diversity and emphasising the things that are common and promote peace. He drew from the example of the Ottoman Empire and how it avoided aspects of Islam which promoted the exclusion of non-Muslims. He illustrated this with the inscription which emphasised the Abrahamic connection between Jews, Christians and Muslims, adding the he would rather be under a Barack Obama than an Osama Bin Laden.

A section of the audience at the event.
Dr. Musa Usman Abubakar, the Sub-Dean of Law (Academics) at Bayero University Kano (BUK) spoke on the Prospects and Challenges of Cognitive Justice in Muslim Northern Nigeria. He said that Cognitive Justice as a concept calls for recognition and respect of our differences, without any stint of inferiority or superiority. Islam was founded on such principles and they were exemplified by Prophet Mohammed (peace be upon him) as he was against any form of injustice. He gave an example of the Charter of Medina among others which saw to peaceful coexistence between the Jews and Muslims in Medina. True Muslims abhor injustice and marginalization, so recognition of diversity as espoused by Cognitive Justice will hold sway in Northern Nigeria, and our Constitution should recognize the diverse languages not recognised in the constitutional framework. He stressed that people should develop their cultures and literature because most of our heritages in culture are going into extinction.

Dr Musa Abubakar the Special Commentator on 'The Prospects of Cognitive Justice in Muslim Northern Nigeria', beside the Chairman Mr Kemanci.
 He stressed that Law and Constitution making are crucial in constructing a socio-political order which recognises and protects diversity. He referred especially to Bolivia and Ecuador as examples.

According to Dr. Kajit J Bagu (John Paul) the initiator of the FOUNDATION FOR THE MOVE FOR COGNITIVE JUSTICE, the idea of Cognitive Justice has been developed into a framework with human identity as central. He mentioned that identity is difficult to define though it can be easily referred to. When two cultures interact, there should be mutual recognition and respect. Even with environmental degradation that we are all aware of, there is the gross neglect of the depletion of cultures and identities. 

COGNITIVE JUSTICE is an expression coined by Shiv Visvanathan (1997), an Indian Professor, to refer to the need for equality in treating different human knowledges and communities by recognizing the diverse ways in which human beings understand the world and give meaning to life. It gained widespread acceptance among global scholars interested in defending human dignity. Leading global scholars and advocates of the idea include Professors Shiv Visvanathan, Maja Van Der Velden and Boaventura De Sousa Santos.

In 2011, during the course of study at Warwick in United Kingdom, Dr. Kajit who is from Kaura local government area of Kaduna state in Nigeria, picked-up the idea from a Seminar with Prof. Boaventura De Sousa Santos and started working to see how it could be developed to generate effective solutions to problems afflicting the African Continent in particular, as well as the global South and the world. These problems are particularly the mass atrocities of Genocide, Ethnic Cleansing, Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes, as well as dehumanization generally construed. Others include armed conflict, especially those based on ethnic and religious plurality, social injustice, inequality and the racism which makes some people seem inferior in the present world order, while others seem superior to others by virtue of identity.

This interest led him to a multi-disciplinary Doctorate in Law at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom, it was awarded in 2014. The Ph.D. Thesis in question used the situation in Nigeria as a case-study in highlighting the problems mentioned. 

Dr Kajit and Professor Stephen Tierney on graduation day in Edinburgh, Scotland.
 This research developed Cognitive Justice from where it was, into a Political Philosophy, a Constitutional Theory, and a Theory of Justice for pluralistic/diverse or multi-identity societies, especially those experiencing the problems mentioned. The Thesis was titled ‘Cognitive Justice, Plurinational Constitutionalism and Post-Colonial Peacebuilding: A Constitutional Philosophy on Identity; the Global South, Central Nigeria’. Following the completion of this ground-breaking research in the UK, the researcher decided to start a grassroots global organization by the name: Movement for Cognitive Justice (MCJ) while in Scotland.

While in Scotland and during an international Conference in Washington, a number of global thinkers felt that a ground breaking research of this nature demanded immediate networking especially in Europe, the researcher reasoned that it was best to have the organization rooted in the global South, specifically Africa, and eventually taking root in other parts of the world. It is very important for us to know that pluralism is a phenomenon that is natural because it cannot be wished away, meaning that people need to strive to have understanding of their differences, appreciate and respect differences for constructive and progressive relations.

Special interventions during the flag-off included a talk on ‘The Endangered Nations’ by Mr Alphonsus Bako where he highlighted the death of languages, including the original ‘Ajemi’ Hausa which was ‘Romanised’ by Lugard. A college student (JSS2) belonging to the Cognitive Justice Society by name Ene also made a powerful rendition of a poem titled ‘Africa my Pride’.

FOUNDATION FOR THE MOVE FOR COGNITIVE JUSTICE is the name by which the organization was incorporated in Nigeria in 2016 as a legal entity, with the aim of fostering effective peacebuilding and human dignity in diverse communities; and for creating awareness/education on Cognitive Justice Peacebuilding.

The ultimate objective is the attainment of Cognitive Justice Peacebuilding (CJP), defined as ‘the equal recognition and treatment of different identities in democratic constitutional society, with the aim of fostering peace through the elimination of legal, political, institutional, structural, social and economic inequality of different identities, whether such inequality be direct or indirect, express or implied, visible or invisible, and whether contemporary or historical.’

Worthy of note is the sharp difference in the conception of peacebuilding in Cognitive Justice, against conventional view and practice of peacebuilding on the globe, including the UN conception coined in 1992 by Boutrous Ghali. Cognitive Justice as an ethical philosophy aims for a preventive system as against the general understanding of peacebuilding where peacebuilding normally takes place after violent conflicts to prevent relapse. Peacebuilding in Cognitive Justice seeks ethics in coexistence as a preventive measure, not merely ethics after crises or war.

A Training Session sometime in mid-2016, Jos.

 THE FOUNDATION FOR THE MOVE FOR COGNITIVE JUSTICE organizes trainings to create awareness through building the necessary skills and knowledge for its quest. It has branches in a few states here in Nigeria. Our desire in Cognitive Justice is durable and sustainable peace, what we are experiencing especially in Nigeria, is a fluctuation from unstable peace to violent conflicts and outright terrorism in some cases. Change here means that we should take responsibility and choose what will work and do us the most good.

Societal rupture, instability and crime are on the increase today in our country Nigeria, armed robbery, kidnappings, ethnic and religious crises, clashes between herders and farmers, Niger-Delta militancy, Boko haram insurgency, internal displacement over the past 4 years have resulted in the displacement of well over 2 million people in the north east region of the country alone. We are aware that the Internally Displaced People are in other geopolitical regions including the north central and the southern geopolitical zones.

We have sections of society clamouring for secession with a call for the actualization of the Republic of Biafra; we are also aware of the situation leading to the killings of members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) by the Nigerian security agencies late in 2015, then the recent incidents with the Nigerian Police Force at Kano where deaths were recorded as well as other attacks by members of the public. There have also been mass killings by Herdsmen in several parts of Nigeria especially Zamfara State, and several towns and villages in Kaduna State inluding Godogodo, Gidan Waya, Tsam (Chawai) and Pasakori. These constitute some of the boiling issues as far as we as a people are concerned. 

Mr Kuliyak receiving his certification.
We have not helped matters due to lack of the needed imagination over time to conceptualize result-oriented systems, structures and modus operandi based on pluralistic principles which respect peculiarities of diverse identities. Our leaders too have been found to be part and parcel of the destruction of the needed self-consciousness by omission or commission; most of them have ignorantly adopted the oppressive posture that only leads to non-recognition of our national identities and maintenance of the imposed morally illegitimate cartography bequeathed by our colonizers. Obviously, the non-recognition, non-protection and lack of preservation of our national identities, including the maintenance of an alien or unnatural cartography are the major causes of conflicts in the country. 

Mr Alphonsus being certified
As a diverse people, we should be able to make well informed demands the will bring the needed change, not political change we normally chant, but change that will better manage our diversity, be beneficial to everyone and bring about durable peace.

The ultimate demand in Africa, from a Cognitive Justice perspective, is the demand for reconstruction of present orders from destructive and violent-prone, oppressive ‘Nation-States’, to Plurinational States across the continent and beyond.

During the question and answer session the issue of the continuous killings in the southern part of Kaduna came up. It was the view of the people at the seminar that cognitive justice stands in a very good position to help in addressing the ongoing killings by playing mediatory role and prescribing a form of constitutional restructuring aimed at effective peacebuilding.

Maryam A, another graduate of Warwick University who was present very early in the day. Also a researcher with the National Judicial Institute Abuja.
We have not helped matters due to lack of the needed imagination over time to conceptualize result-oriented systems, structures and modus operandi based on pluralistic principles which respect peculiarities of diverse identities. Our leaders too have been found to be part and parcel of the destruction of the needed self-consciousness by omission or commission; most of them have ignorantly adopted the oppressive posture that only leads to non-recognition of our national identities and maintenance of the imposed morally illegitimate cartography bequeathed by our colonizers.

In his closing remarks, the Sa Gbagyi expressed gratitute for the event being organised and expressed the need for government and its functionaries to listen to the kinds of ideas being expressed by the speakers at the venue. He made positive pronouncements in favour of the movement and said indeed a better world is attainable with such efforts.

Sa Gbagyi (Traditional leader of the indigenous Gbagyi Nation of Kaduna) as represented
Obviously, the non-recognition, non-protection and lack of preservation of our national identities, including the maintenance of an alien or unnatural cartography are the major causes of conflicts in the country.

The event successfully came to a close at about 2pm

 A Better World is Attainable!

Thursday 1 September 2016

ISLAM BEING IMPOSED? (Nigeria, The West and the Fulani)

Kajit J Bagu (John Paul), PhD (Edinburgh)


'Africa/Nigeria is being Islamised' is a cry you seem to hear every single day in the recent past, a cry which echoes in a different context in Europe. This cry is repeated daily in different contexts to such an extent as to make one imagine that something akin to the invincible Muslim Ottoman Army at the height of its power was encamped somewhere, and about to be unleashed upon the non-Muslim world.
Islamising Africa
Whether this is an unfounded Islamophobia or a reality, is a question I would beg not to attempt here. I would want to instead nib at the tiny question of whether Islam is being imposed. I also wish to narrow my scope by looking at 'Nigeria', and perhaps different bits of the British colonial creation by that name. Invariably, I will be talking about cries of Islamisation in the context of 'Nigeria', The West and the Fulani. Before doing this, perhaps we should briefly reflect on the dominant imaginary of what 'Islamisation' has meant to the non-Muslim.

The Sword, often associated with Islam, a symbol on the Flag of Saudi Arabia
The Sword! Yes, the sword encapsulates the dominant image of 'Islamisation'. This is a position that is supported from the self-image of Islam most importantly, as well as from the image engrafted in the minds of the non-Muslim. It is common to see the sword drawn as a symbol across many Muslim books, flags and inscriptions. And please note that I am not speaking of ISIS or BOKO HARAM, no! Look at the previous and present flags of countries that are described as 'Islamic' and you will find the sword in a short time. The flag of Saudi Arabia is an eminent example of the sword occupying a prominent symbolism.
Other symbols associated with Islam abound
One must acknowledge that this image sometimes makes many Muslims uncomfortable, especially in a world where human and liberal values have sunk deep into the human psyche and spirit. My apologies to persons of this disposition, but you can derive consolation from the fact that profound progress has been made by many committed Muslims in reforming the image of Islam towards less violent self-portrayals. In this regard I must mention a long list of initiatives across the world, driven by the teachings of Fethullah Gulen, the Turkish Muslim Cleric living in Pennsylvania USA, and the Hizmet Movement he has inspired.
Fethullah Gulen
These efforts do not stop at mere rhetoric, but go as far as doctrinal discourse. For example, Gulen proposes that in addition to the classical Muslim division of the world into Dar al Islam (realm of Islam/peace) and Dar al Harb (realm not under Islam or in darkness/war) with its implications for violence, there should be a new realm named Dar al Hizmah (realm of service). This development is taking place in a world of rising Islamic extremism no doubt, but the extremists do not have the final say in shaping the image of Islam, hopefully.

Nevertheless, the image of the sword, often a bloody sword, is what dominates the imaginary of 'Islamisation'. So my friends, when cries of Islamisation are bellowed on a daily basis, what are we to make of the images invoked thereby? How for instance, do we understand the claim/cry that 'Nigeria is being Islamised' today?


It should not be a 'discovery' to say that 'Nigeria' as a British creation, was conceived and designed to eventually be comprehensively Muslim. Any scholar who is not aware of this reality is not yet a scholar within this context. Yes, I mean it! Anyone who thinks 'Nigeria' is incompatible with 'Islamisation' should better go back and consult the 'owners', 'designers' and thus, the masters of the creation named 'Nigeria'!

When Flora Shaw gave the name in her book, her central thesis was to the effect that the path to civilisation for the 'Negro Savages' in this area, was to be located in two factors. First is the creed of Islam, also referred to as 'Mohammedanism' in those sources, and second is the 'capable rule'of 'superior races', particularly the Fulani and Arabs in Africa, for they were categorised as 'Foreign white races' whose mission in Africa was to spread Islam and to rule. Lugard repeated these sentiments consistently in his works. For them (the masters), Islam comes with a 'superior race from the North'.

I guess my point is that no contemporary 'Nigerian' leader can rightly be accused of, or credited with Islamising 'Nigeria' today! No leader can be greater than the masters whose political philosophies dominate, define and shape their very existence. Lugard went great lengths to justify why Islamisation has to be the way to civilisation, and that is where the Fulani come in. There could be no vision of the future for Negro Savages without a 'foreign superior race bringing Islam'. This design squarely agreed with the European idea of building an ínternational order'based on a categorisation of humanity into three with corresponding degrees of human dignity/entitlement to recognition. These three were the Civilised (European), the Barbarian (semi-civilised, mostly Muslim Ottomans, and the Savage (American Aborigines, Africans, most of Asia). The Fulani were thus the 'Barbarians'necessary for çivilising'the indigenous 'African Savage'. He wrote:

'Islam as a militant creed which teaches contempt for those who are not its votaries, panders to the weakness of the African character- self-conceit and vanity. Centuries of lawlessness have made the African a worshiper of force ... quick to adopt the creed of the conqueror, chiefly for the prestige it brought. It's very excess, the capture of women as slaves and concubines, and the looting of villages ... form the beau ideal of his desires if he can be the aggressor ... And there is much else which appeals to the African in the religion of Mahomet.'
Lugard 1922, The Dual Mandate, 77.
The British Colonial 'Masters', 'Owners' and their Fulani Rulers of 'Nigeria'.
That statement reflected, and probably remains (in a subtle way), the voice of 'The West', author of 'Nigeria' and master of its philosophical undertones. It is a voice which echoes into the past and the present of 'Nigeria', Africa and the global South. For Lugard and 'The West' he represented, Islam was the right religion, and the Fulani who were considered a 'foreign white race', made-up the perfect composition for framing a political philosophy for this 'savage' collection of 'Negroes' for the most part. This explains the approval he sought and obtained in 1902 from the Colonial Office in a memo, to use the Fulani as 'Rulers' (1902 Annual Reports of Northern Nigeria). The islamisation of 'Nigeria' was thus accomplished at its creation. If anything, things have not gone to plan in accomplishing this vision. To the colonial British mind, the Negro should be Islamised since s/he is 'too inferior' for 'strict Christianity'.

I think Sir Ahmadu Bello understood this well enough and worked hard at his conversion campaigns even as Premier of the 'Northern Region'after the índependence'of 'Nigeria'in the 1960s. Successive leaders of 'Nigeria' probably betrayed this vision, especially the non-Muslim ones. Paden's account of numerous visits by Sir Ahmadu Bello to Guinea, Sierra-Leone, Tunisia, Morocco, Lebanon among others, along with the celebratory pomp with which he was welcome 'home' in those societies, says a lot about the fact that Ahmadu Bello understood this well quite well. The declaration by him and the Lebanese leader issued in Lebanon on his visit, acknowledged that the Fulani and the Lebanese were of 'common stock'. Such is the reality of how contemporary and profound the pattern goes.

But why do I mention the Fulani? I do so because Lugard's vision could not be complete without the 'Fulani' as a 'superior, foreign race.' Of course the 'superior' and 'ruling' race cannot be 'foreign' despite being foreign, just as immigrant Europeans cannot be 'foreign' in America where they are the 'superior', 'ruling' identity, despite being foreign and indigenous to Europe. I guess those raising alarms of 'Islamisation' can realise that so long there is 'Nigeria', a British colonial imaginary, Islamisation is, and will remain part of the matrix as designed, and the Fulani are the 'superior', ruling identity. US Secretary of State John Kerry has to be conscious of this, and so the itinerary on his 2016 visit to 'Nigeria' was apt in prioritising the Sultan of Sokoto and Northern Nigerian Elites under the banner of 'Northern Governors'.

Should it be news that Uthman Dan Fodio's Sokoto Caliphate collapsed in 1902 with Sultan Attahiru's death at Burmi when he and the loyalists of the Fodio legacy made a last stand in battle against the British detachment of the West African Frontier Force (WAFF)? This is old news! That which emerged and existed thereafter, has been a Western creation, a Fulani religious power structure far superior to the one which perished along with the Fodio's green flag in 1902, on the field of historic battle that fateful 27th day of July. The new Sultan (also named Attahiru) installed or imposed by Lugard and honoured by the West, is part of the 'Nigeria' imaginary. To the best of my knowledge, it is only the Sultan of Sokoto who has had the honour of being conferred the title of 'Companionship of St. Michael and St. George' by the King of England. This was right after the 'massacre' at Satiru, a village near Sokoto where some Hausa 'rebels' had resisted British rule and attacked a detachment of the WAFF, killing and capturing a Maxim gun. The Sultan's loyalty was such that his forces not only matched with the WAFF and killed all 2000 inhabitants of Satiru, but he went ahead to prohibit the habitation of Satiru thenceforth. That strenghtened the Fulani the special place given them by the West. This buttresses why the Fulani must rule for the British, Western vision and construct of 'Nigeria' to be realised fully.


The dynamics of the foregoing have probably been significantly reflected in Kaduna State, the capital of 'Northern Nigeria' as designated by Lugard in 1912. Taking Kaduna State for instance, the indigenous 'inferior races' rallied to vote one of two Fulanis at the last elections. Other aspirants were simply ignored. And so El-Rufai, won decisively, and almost immediately 'de-indigenised' the state.
Governor Ahmed Nasiru El-Rufai of Kaduna State.

The man is probably a perfect reflection of the colonial vision of the superior Fulani rulers. In 2012 while I was doing research in Edinburgh, Scotland, I took note of his statement in July, when the Federal Government muted the idea of attacking a 'Fulani military camp' on a rock near Jos. This was right after some lawmakers were killed by 'Fulani attackers' within the Riyon-Barkin Ladi axis where the militant camp was allegedly based. He warned that no military or civilians should dare attack the Fulani. Today, he is governor and Buhari, a Fulani Grand Patron, is president. Lugard must be exclaiming: 'perfect!
El-Rufai's message on attacking Fulani 'Militia' near Jos in 2012

Governor El-Rufai knows his roots and pedigree. He recently said his roots are in Guinea. And so understandably, the diversity of identities indigenous to the state would be a problem that should be 'solved' by possibly being wiped-out or homogenised if possible. I recently advised his friend, my teacher at ABU Zaria (Professor Yusuf Dankofa) in a comment via social media, to lecture him on the constitutional mechanisms for governing a pluralistic society (in view of his background as a Quantity Surveyor), but it seems to bear no fruit so far. This approach of problematising diversity was Governor El-Rifai's deeply-held notion as expressed in a January 2012 speech at Abuja, titled 'The Nigeria of our Dreams'. There he implied that plurality is a problem that should be eliminated in building 'a nation'.
Today, ‘Fulani herdsmen' are seemingly attacking widely, if reports are something to go by. But it seems the 'inferior races' are comfortable despite the attacks which have been a pattern for many years now. They voted significantly for these leaders in Benue, Plateau, Kaduna etc, but the attacks go beyond these areas to Enugu and other places as reported. The atrocities are sad realities indeed, but this is 'Nigeria', a child/creation of the West where 'Fulani privilege' it seems, needs to trump many 'things'. In  this context, the proposed 'Grazing Reserves'designated for territories that are ancestral to the índigenous savages' may very likely produce greater rupture where the sentiments of the 'indigenous savages'are ignored as they are likely to be. I guess this point is increasingly becoming manifest. On the whole before I conclude, I can understand how the idea of a 'Nigeria-The West-Fulani' connection can seem fuzzy to the common person. That is why I must request pardon and understanding for heaping the fruits of profound research on you.


But in conclusion, here is one thing you could at least take home: 'Nigeria' was created through the thinking, hardwork and exertion of Western/British colonial adventurous undertakings. It's principles, prejudices and pillars were set by the colonial creators. If Islamisation is part of that construct in an imaginary within a 'Nigeria-The West-Fulani' design, then you better not accuse leaders who have become automatons in a set matrix. Automatons often have little to do with the origins and designs of structures, matrixes and systems wherein their roles have been pre-defined and pre-determined. To ask too much of them would be misplaced in terms of either giving them credit for the system crafted by the 'masters', or look to them for too much of a solution. 'Nigeria' has owners and masters, even the name of it does.

The message for those raising issues with this real construct of 'Nigeria' would therefore be something as follows: If you want a country to call your own, you better get down to work in the best way possible, using all the democratic and liberal tools available to this age, including those which make the lingering colonial achievements look suspect and no longer viable or defensible. You may need rare skills for this task, especially constitutional theorists of the contemporary, cutting-edge kind (not the lovers of colonial legacies you have parading as 'leaders' and 'activists' all over). In this, those especially who have become 'authorities' in the existing order (whether academic, political, economic or social), must be viewed with skepticism. They are draped in the logic of this system, a system clearly bereft of emancipatory potential. It can no longer respond to contemporary challenges because its philosophies are spent, no longer viable, morally legitimate nor sustainable.

As for me, my ship has set sail in the quest for a better world in Cognitive Justice. What I mean by this is that the logic of racism and inequality which shaped and still dominates the 'International Order' needs to give way to the logic of equality and true human dignity at all levels: global and domestic. In terms of socio-politically organising pluralistic societies, the colonial 'Nation-State' and its uncritical post-colonial (or neo-colonial successor), needs to be replaced by more suited constructs. One of such is the idea of the Plurinational State, and by this, I do not speak of 'Multinational States' as an idea which has so far been the preserve of the pluralistic West (United Kingdom, Canada, Spain etc). I speak of a Plurinational State construct which transcends the discriminatory categories by which racism has been made central to the globalisation of the last 500 years, and pivotal to the structuring of the 'International'. These categories three typical categories: The Civilised'', 'The Barbarian' and 'The Savage' must disappear in rhetoric, and most crucially, it must be banished from the logic that rules world orders and structures. It is the vision of what I have called a 'Pluriversal World Order'.

We must join the positive influences which are dedicated to the optimism that indeed, a better world is attainable!

Dr Kajit's research at Edinburgh focused on 'Cognitive Justice, Plurinational Constitutionalism and Post-colonial Peacebuilding'.

Monday 29 August 2016


Kajit J Bagu (John Paul) PhD (Edinburgh).

'... care for those of us who lag behind and bring them back into the fight ...
identify whoever keeps betraying us at the back and help us find out why.'
- BDS Santos, 2014.

It is not the oppressor that should be feared, for his/her man/woman power and abilities are terribly limited.

It is the compromised among the oppressed who should be feared (the weak, the selfish, the ambitious, the proud, the vain, the vulnerable, the uninformed and the non-conscious!)
They have the power to betray, and that is a great and terrible power indeed!

The struggle for a just, equal and peaceful world is confronted by this challenge at different levels.

In Scotland, Scots were necessary for the subjugation of Scotland.
'Europeanised Africans' were necessary for the subjugation of Africa.
Libyans were necessary for the destruction of Gaddafi in Libya.
'Elites' are necessary for the neo-colonisation of Africa today, they are necessary at every level for the obliteration of indigenous Africa and the alienation of her birth right.
Syrians will be necessary for the destruction of Syria.

Unfortunately, I must 'soil' this post with my expertise in Constitutional Theory and Political Philosophy by adding that in the case of what the British Empire derogatorily called 'Nigeria', certain principles are deeply enshrined in the constitution of this colonial construct to guarantee a permanent state of division and thus, of collective, comprehensive and desirably perpetual subjugation. Let the thinker consider these ornamental, constitutional chains:

1. Consociationalism;
2. Colonial 'Nationhood';
3. Individualised and 'corporatised' Fundamental Rights in contempt of indigenous communality;
4. Europeanised' and 'Arabised' elites and 'citizens';
5. A federalism and boundary system defined by what I have called 'colonising cartography'.

These are exalted as ornaments with colonial roots, but they act as chains!
How seemingly beautiful to think that another reality is unimaginable besides these! That it is treasonable to be critical in thought, and therefore remain bound to relish chains as ornaments!
When structure becomes the veiled-cum-desired tool for oppression, which the oppressed are bound to adore; when you must take more doses of poison to 'cure' earlier, lesser, but destructive doses!

No! It is not the oppressor that should be feared, his/her powers are limited.

OF CHASING SYMPTOMS? (US Diplomacy, Murders and Reactionaries)


Kajit J Bagu (John Paul), PHD (Edinburgh).


And so, many were concerned that John Kerry visited the Fulani/Muslim Sultan in Sokoto, met with 'Northern Governors' only and with the President behind closed doors in a rare US high level visit to Nigeria!

In the meantime, some profoundly gruesome pictures accompanied tales of 'Fulani attacks' in Enugu within a short space of time.

Simultaneously it would seem, some Kaduna State indigenes under the banner of SOKAPU assembled in black with banners saying no to grazing reserves, and 'stop the killings'.

Zamfara completes my circle of 'symptoms' with accounts of the murder of an 'infidel' Christian, along with about 7 Muslims as 'collateral damage', for being in a house where the 'infidel' was shielded. His crime was something along the lines of insult to Islam!

These four incidents all led to the raising of concerns, or constituted the raising of concerns such as the protest against grazing reserves. But what do these concerns have in common from an epiphenomenal (what proceeds from what) perspective?

For one, I suppose that I might be entitled to call them all reactive, and thus reactionary, rather than proactive. To be reactionary often also amounts to 'waiting for the manifestation of things long in motion'. How does this 'reactionarism' play in each of these cases?

First on Kerry's visit, the reactionary bit locates itself at various levels, first in being blissfully ignorant, or nonchalant about how the West constructs and views power relations in 'the dark continent' as they call it. It lies in a complicit ignorance of what is central to Eurocentric philosophies of identity, power and race as pivotal to the construction of what it calls 'civilisation' in the mould of Modernity and the New World Order. It makes no sense to the reactionaries that Barbarians always rank ahead of Savages in western political philosophy. In this case, being reactionary or behind the tides is what happens when Kerry does precisely what agrees with long established patterns of Eurocentric foreign policy of the USA, itself a European colonial offspring.

With the Enugu murders and the outcry they generate, the SOKAPU protest against grazing reserves (including the protest in Plateau and the Booing of Deputy Governor Tyoden in COCIN Church) and killings in southern Kaduna, as well as the Zamfara murders, a consistent pattern of reactionary predispositions is remarkable.

This says a lot about the people in this colonially crafted and structured 'Nigerian' system!

What does it say?

Yes, it says much, much more than I can type here. But at least you can take one lesson away: there seems to be a profound aptitude for chasing symptoms. This perhaps indicts the capacity of first, those who we may call 'rulers', then the intellectuals/thinkers and lastly, civil society in this post-colonial construct.

It'll take a volume to outline these perspectives and realities. Perhaps that's why we undertake a Cognitive Justice Peacebuilding Ambassadorship training for six weeks at the Foundation for the Move(ment) for Cognitive Justice (MCJ).

Certainly, those who should solve problems, or facilitate their being solved, need the right levels of consciousness, awareness, knowledge, skills and tact. Otherwise, as Einstein implies, how can the same level of consciousness solve the problems which were created from it?