Failure of government to arrest, prosecute herdsmen terrorising Southern Kaduna communities, indication of complicity, SOKAPU alleges


The Southern Kaduna Peoples Union (SOKAPU), has accused the federal and the Kaduna state government for allegedly refusing to arrest and prosecute bandits terrorising communities in the southern part of Kaduna state.
President SOKAPU, Awemi Maisamari, made the accusation at a news conference on Thursday in Kaduna.
The SOKAPU President also lamented the “silence of Amnesty International (AI),
the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the Africa Union (AU), the CommonWealth of Nations and the United Nations (UN) over the pogrom going on Southern Kaduna.”
Awema said in the past six years, about 63 Atyap communities have been attacked and hundreds of people killed by invading armed herdsmen without a single arrest and persecution by the authorities.
“Ironically, scores of Atyap leaders have been arrested and put in jail over trumped up charges in the violence in which they are the victims”, he said.
He said the latest of such attacks was on April 15, 2023, in Runji village, Zangon Kataf LGA, where “armed herdsmen attacked the community at about 1am, killed 33 people, mostly women and children and burnt over 40 houses.”
“Maisamari said, “So far, there has been an apparent failure or refusal by the Kaduna State government under Mallam Nasir el-Rufai and the Muhammadu Buhari led Federal Government to apprehend and prosecute the killers.
“We interprete this as a clear indication of their complicity in the genocide in various parts of Southern Kaduna”.
He said, “This belief is reinforced by the fact that survivors are usually left to die of their wounds or other forms of suffering as no relieve is sent to them.
“Again, to show that the Fulani militia have the backing of especially Kaduna State government, anytime a fulani cow gets lost or any fulani is harmed by suspected Southern Kaduna natives, the entire area where the incident is suspected to have happened is raided by combat happy security personnel.
“This usually culminates in youths and community leaders being taken to police detention or prison custody.”
Speaking further, Maisamari said “Apart from the deadly invasions, the daily kidnapping of persons and unscheduled blocking of highways by terrorists in Southern Kaduna has not stopped.”
He said, “Most of these now go unreported because of their frequency and the remoteness of locations.
“Now, only mass abductions or cases involving notable individuals are reported.
In one such recent reported case on April 4, 2023, armed terrorists invaded Government Secondary School Awon, Kachia LGA in Southern Kaduna and kidnapped 10 students in broad daylight, eight of them school girls. Instead of pursuing and apprehending the terrorists, all Kaduna state government does is to announce and document the occurrence of such crimes carried out just to wait for the next one.
“After 15 harrowing days in the jungle in the hands of their captors, we have been informed that the girls have managed to escape and are now in the custody of the government.
“We are indeed happy about this development and we praise God for his grace…”
The SOKAPU President said further that, “many farm lands with ripe crops are often consumed by fulani herds in a show of impunity.”
He added that, “those who dared to challenge such brazen acts of cruelty met instant death or escaped by the whiskers from the hands of the untouchable herders.”
According to him, “Both the herdsmen and their cattle have become sacred cows in Southern Kaduna.
“In fact, it is on social media now that the Fulani militia have sent out warning, that some communities in southern Kaduna should not bother going to farm in the coming rainy season, as doing so will only amount to producing fodder for their cattle.”
Maisamari said, no fewer than 245 Southern Kaduna communities have been sacked by armed herdsmen in collaboration with terrorists.
He lamented that with a few weeks to the end of the current administration, the attacks had been on the increase.
“And the fact that the same government wants to succeed itself at both the state and federal levels, we have great doubts if the genocide, kidnapping, displacement and occupation will abate.
“On these notes we are seriously concerned about the curious silence of Amnesty International (AI) on the pogrom going on Southern Kaduna.
“We are also very sad about the silence of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the Africa Union (AU), the CommonWealth of Nations and the United Nations (UN) over the unrelenting pogrom in Southern Kaduna.
“SOKAPU is calling on these continental and global bodies to send independent investigation teams to Southern Kaduna to debunk or confirm our claims of ethnic cleansing here.
“Before then, we advocate for a UN or AU Peace Enforcement Operations Base in Southern Kaduna. This will practicality demonstrate that the world is interested in our collective survival as minority ethnic groups.
“It must not abandon us to be hounded by well funded and well-armed herdsmen who are being encouraged and protected by their powerful kinsmen and collaborators in and outside Nigeria”, the group said.



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