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Presumed Guilty by Association

There is no doubt that the recent killings in Plateau State allegedly carried out by terrorists of the Fulani extraction have caused a lot of backlash on the entire tribe and the Islamic religion, with many viewing both the innocent and guilty in the same light.

Being assumed guilty just by association is not a pleasant feeling. It is a burden on the soul that weighs down the spirit of even the strongest of men. It is not an experience one would wish on one’s worst enemy.

But the problem is that this situation could have been avoided if the authorities had not cuddled these terrorists, giving them preferential treatment. If public figures had not asked for preferential treatment. If the peaceful ones had not remained silent but condemned the criminals and their apologists, no one would have assumed the quintessential “silence is consent”. If similar events in the past had not been explained away as retaliation for stolen cattle, as if human life has the same value as that of cows. So many Ifs that would have brought about a different chain of events.

All in all, it is unfair that the innocent have to share a label with the guilty. But if you did not join the victims to call out the perpetrators of your kilt and kin, do you have any rights to demand that your family name be cleared?

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