Our Communities Are Under Siege – Sokapu

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    The Southern Kaduna Peoples Union (SOKAPU) is once again constrained to draw the attention of every government authoritaty, the general public and the International Community to the continuous deadly siege and violent attacks on Southern Kaduna Communities by armed militiamen believed to be Fulani herdsmen has continued unabated, and seems to be taking a turn for the worse on a daily basis.

    ROLL CALL OF RECENT ATTACKS

    You will recall that on the 6th January, 2020, we informed the world
    of the impunity with which armed militiamen sacked several Gbagyi communities in Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna state, forcing them to flee their homes into exile in neighbouring Niger state.

    On the very same day of 6th January, 2020, Kasso, a peaceful Gbagyi community in Chikun LGA on its eastern boundary with Kajuru Local LGA, was again raided by these invading terrorists.
    In that attack, Mr Yusuf Sule (39) and his family were hard hit. The bandits killed his younger brother, Eli Sule (35) a father of five children, Danjuma Bulus (30) a father of four children, his cousin, Istifanus Auta (31) a father of three children.

    Also, his wife Ladi Yusuf a nursing mother was abducted with her six month’s old baby. His younger brother Bulus Sule and his wife Rebecca Sule were also kidnapped.

    Meanwhile, Irmiya Yusuf, the son of Yusuf Sule, who survived gunshot wounds, is receiving treatment at a local clinic.
    This morning, (11th, January, 2020), Yususf Sule received a call from the kidnappers. They used the phone of his kidnapped brother, Sule Bulus and called him. The kidnappers are asking for the ransom of N5 million. The brother told him that they are not in a good condition and that the six months old baby is critically sick because of the kind of condition they are being held captive . Yusuf and the community have no means of raising that money after the bandits looted the little they had gathered including two motorcycles Yusuf Sule owned.

    On Wednesday, the 8th of January, armed gunmen, again attacked the defenceless Good Shepherd Major Catholic Seminary, Buwaya, Kaduna. The school authority in an official statement said the attackers barraged the school for over 30 mins, unchallenged. After they left, 4 seminarians were missing, having been taken away by the vicious attackers

    In Badna, Guruku Ward, still in Chikun LGA another Gbagyi community, 40 people were kidnapped in one fell swoop around the same time. Rev, Samaila Yusuf of the local Baptist church was among the victims.Till date, the fate of the victims is yet unknown.

    Around the same time, bandits raided Rumana Gbagyi and Rumana Hausa where they looted the villages, carted away livestock and other valuables. Still in Guruku Ward, a community called Bademi was ransacked and looted. One Idi Halidu was killed and two people kidnapped.

    Again, the invaders struck at Unguwan Buji and killed one Sani Buji. In a display of brazen impunity, they kidnapped 15 people and vanished into the bushes with them. In nearby Maloma community, the invaders robbed and ransacked the village and burnt a large quantity of rice and other grains before disappearing into the unknown. All these happened in a span of four days without any response from any security agency.

    Earlier, On the 16th December, 2019, in Chidunu Village near Maraban Rido in Chikun LGA, Raphael Ayuba (40), married with five children was killed by assailants. Other casualties of the attack include Habila Auta (40), who left behind a wife Tina and two children. Also killed was Buhari Abubakar (41) married with four children. From available information, the armed men went from house to house killing and maiming these hapless victims with no help coming from anywhere.

    Also, on the 18th December, at Doka village in Kajuru LGA, the invaders struck. One Danbaki Gashi (35) was killed. He is survived by two wives and two children.

    The spate of killings, kidnapping, arson, looting, raping and amounts paid in ransoms to these terrorists by our communities is traumatising and impoverishing our people on a daily basis, making them susceptible to hunger and disease.

    Earlier, according to a press release by the Christian Association of Nigeria, Kaduna State Chapter, that as at August 2019, affected Christian families, Churches and communities have paid over N300 million to these kidnappers. The amount paid as at today, 11th January, 2020, as CAN told SOKAPU, is estimated to be about N400 million.

    We are shocked with the way that the Federal Government and the government of Kaduna State seem to be overwhelmed by these cruel crimes. These defenceless victims and the affected communities are left to their own fate, in the hands of these blood thirsty militiamen.

    It is sad that it is the same communities who are victims of these mass murders, kidnappings, arsons, lootings, rapings and other mindless evils are forced to pay their assailants huge sums to gain their freedom or that of their loved ones. It is from this money that we believe, the invaders use to purchase more arms and enlarge their operations against the next community.

    We fear that with the unchecked boldness that these heinous crimes against humanity are spreading, there is a systematic plan to wipe out our communities and take over our lands.

    SUGGESTIONS FOR THE WAY OUT

    The recent attacks underscore the urgent need for a vibrant, government funded and staffed vigilante organization for every community in Southern Kaduna and indeed the entire Middle Belt Region. It is evident that in States and Regions where such organizations exist, as we have the Hizbah in Kano State, the Civilian JTF in Yobe and Borno States and the recent Amotekun established by Oduduwa States, there is greater assurance of safety for the people. Adopting this security measure for our communities will not only improve security but ensure greater safety for our people.

    We strongly support what the Yoruba States have done by establishing Amotekun to secure and protect all law abiding citizens in their domain. We look forward to PANDEF and OHANEZE N’DIGBO toeing the same path of the Yoruba States to assist Security Agencies in protecting their communities.

    Signed: Luka Binniyat

    National Public Relations Officer
    11th January, 2020

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