The consistent shedding of blood in Nigeria by herdsmen around the country has left Nigerians with no choice other than to find other ways of pouring out their grievances. The Nigerian flag is now the rallying point for protest. Nigerian celebrities took to social media with powerful images of blood and deep wounds. The blood depicted the victims of herdsmen. The images were shared under the hashtag #BloodOnTheFlag.
#BloodOnTheFlag is reminiscent of Zimbabwean Pastor Evans Mawarire who started the protest #ThisFlag in 2016 to challenge the rule of Robert Mugabe. The rule of Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has been filled with incompetence, most importantly the inability to tackle national insecurity. In his inauguration speech in May 2015, President Buhari said, “At home we face enormous challenges. Insecurity, pervasive corruption, the hitherto unending and seemingly impossible fuel and power shortages are the immediate concerns. We are going to tackle them head on. Nigerians will not regret that they have entrusted national responsibility to us. We must not succumb to hopelessness and defeatism. We can fix our problems.”
Three years later, the problems Nigerians are facing are still as numerous as they were when President Buhari came into power. In response to the killings that took place in Jos, Plateau State, President Buhari said, “Nobody can say that we haven’t done well in terms of security, we have done our best, but the way this situation is now, we can only pray.”
Nigerians have however demanded that President Buhari must do more. The #BloodOnTheFlag goes with a simple message, “I could be a victim.” The Nigerian flag is used as a backdrop with blood shed on it. The likes of Nigerian comedian Frank Donga have joined this protest against the killings going on in the country.