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Opinions of Monday, 1 August 2016

Columnist: Inna Hajar Osman

The plight of Fulanis in Ghana

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As I stepped out of my house to work yesterday, I saw Hajia Amina Fulani, wailing “Aww my people are being killed, our people are being slaughtered, aww God, what have we done to deserve this”.

I walked closer to her, trying to console her but she would not give up the heartbreaking tears. I felt remorseful for myself. In fact, I felt sorry for my whole being. I felt regretful because I am also a Fulani, born and raised here in Ghana.

I held myself stretched to my Islamic garment, while I also began to “breed” tears, and so many weird and wonderful feelings started running through my mind.

In point of fact, thoughts that could leave memorable scare on one’s mind. Just one day “insane” young woman, I initiated a talk with myself and started asking basic questions. “Why are my people suffering from these atrocities?

Few minutes afterwards, the woman was still weeping. From a closer look one could visible see she was traumatized, weak and tired of life. I walked a bit closer again, then I said to her, “Our people in the remote areas lack education”.

She adjusted herself and looked straight into my eyes, then I continued, “It’s about time we do our best to get them educated”.

We the Fulani people have been living in Ghana since early 20th century. We constitute a smaller portion of the total Ghanaian population.

From the neighboring sahelian country during the colonial period, we subsequently settled in the beautiful land of Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, the first President of the Republic of Ghana.

In the north, the pastoral Fulani and indigenes who are predominantly farmers established reciprocal economic relations. They entrusted their cattle to them.

But in recent times, my people are considered as collection of criminals. This, I can say, is affecting our identity as humble people. I am beginning to understand why the Fulanis are regarded as an unattractive choice to humanity.

With headlines like “two Fulani arm robbers arrested, Fulani arrested for murder” and the likes, why would not that wrong impression occur to some people?

It hurts when such headlines are mischievously placed in the media. Just like any other tribe, I am a proud Fulani young woman.

We the Fulani communities in Ghana feel unfairly treated by a section of the media who associate such crimes to us in general.

The question is, why the media choose to mention only the Fulani tribe in a crime related issues but ignore other people’s tribe with same matter? In reality, the Fulanis are the only ethnic group being singled out by the media when they are in trouble.

Wouldn’t you agree with me that to judge a tribe merely by looking at the actions of some of the people is unfair? To create a bad picture of a tribe to sell your stories is also unfair?

There are responsible and law abiding Fulanis who are contributing to the national development of the country.

My plea to the President of Ghana Journalist Association is to intervene in this matter because the media is actually not being fair to the Fulanis in Ghana.

I am also pleading with other ethnic groups who are vent on vengeance to please get the perpetrators of any evil act arrested and let the Law deal with them.

On behalf Fulani Youth Association of Ghana, I would like to say sorry for any terrible thing caused by some of my people to the country. Let’s try and settle our differences.

Mother Ghana is for us all.

Long live Ghana.