Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo has ordered for the reinforcement of security apparatus in Kaduna State so as to apprehend those behind the recent killings of innocent citizens.
The directive came on the heel of reports of communal clashes that resulted in the loss of lives earlier this week in Kajuru, Kajuru Local Government Area of the State.
A statement signed by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and publicity, Laolu Akande, Prof. Osinbajo commiserated with families of the victims, the government and people of Kaduna State, and wishes the injured victims speedy recovery.
It said, “He also commends the prompt response and efforts of the State government, and those of the security agencies which contained the situation and restored the peace.
“While condemning the act of violence in strong terms, the Acting President notes that the security challenge in Southern Kaduna which has led to the needless deaths is a source of concern for the Federal government and indeed all well-meaning Nigerians.
“Noting previous and ongoing efforts of the Buhari administration to confront the situation, Prof. Osinbajo assures that no effort would be spared in identifying and bringing perpetrators of these dastardly acts, against innocent Nigerians to justice no matter how long or hard it may take.
“According to him, Nigerians in the area and everywhere in the country have a right to live in peace, and the Federal Government considers this its sacred duty ensuring such expectation.
“We will not relent and won’t be deterred in our pursuit of securing the lives and property of all Nigerians, everywhere and in every part of this nation.
“In the end, we will not only secure the peace all around, but we shall enforce justice for the victims and all of those that are affected,” he declared.
Meanwhile, the Kaduna Police Command on Wednesday confirmed that 32 persons mostly women and children were killed in clashes between groups of youth and herdsmen in Kajuru LGA.
The local government which is about 50 kilometers from Kaduna, the state capital was peaceful until 11th July 2017, when a young herder was attacked by group of youth.
His father, who came to rescue his son was also assaulted and later died in a hospital where he was rushed to for medical attention.
Before these killings, Kajuru was among the few peaceful local governments in southern part of the state.
The development however metamorphosed into fresh round of confrontation between group of native youth farmers and herders and as at 17th July, 2017, 32 people were reportedly killed and two others sustained varying degrees of injury.
CP Agyole said, “The problem started when some youths claimed that they saw a Fulani with a bag which they alleged to contain military camouflage but he ran away.
“On their way coming, they saw a young grazing herder and they attacked him. But while that was ongoing, his father came in to rescue his son and was subsequently assaulted but later died in a hospital where he was rushed to.
“We must not assume or conclude that because in recent past, in some communities of the state where attacks had taken place by suspected Fulani herdsmen and therefore for every violent attack, the aggressors must be Fulani herdsmen.
“I do believe that in this particular incident, that assertion is not true.
“Police was informed and we immediately swung into action but before we could reach the place, 26 Fulanis who were mostly women and children have been killed and their huts razed. This took place at remote settlements.
“This form of unprovoked attack is not only barbaric; it must be condemned especially when the state is experiencing some level of peace.
“Police will continue to render all legitimate service to ensure peace in the state.
“We will not rest until those behind the dastardly act are brought to justice and we will do all we can to prevent escalation of this”, the CP assured.
The police boss then implored media to verify their information before going public saying, misleading information may escalate the situation if not properly managed.
However, eye-witness account captured the story differently from the police, saying the crisis started when some Fulani youths stormed a village called Ungwan Uka to avenge the death of a certain herdsman allegedly killed by some village youths at a farm in the area.
Recall that the National Secretary of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN), Dr. Abdullahi Ibrahim, said the previous attack which left four herdsmen dead followed the abduction of two Fulani indigenes in the area.
Dr. Ibrahim added that the gunmen had also attacked Tsonho Damishi community in Chikun Local Government Area of the state where they destroyed houses.
He had described the attacks as unwarranted and provoking and appealed to members of the association to remain calm while calling on security agencies to bring the killers to justice.
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