Kaduna State Government, North west Nigeria, has warned communities to avoid resorting to self-help or engaging in jungle justice to settle scores. Rather, they should follow the law to settle grievances
The Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Samuel Aruwan issued the warning at Kajuru during a security engagement on Sunday, over the renewed violence in the area at the weekend.
Aruwan maintained that ‘’if Fulani while grazing come under attack, they must not take the laws into their hands but rather they must recourse to the law and government. Similarly, should Adara, in the course of farming and other activities come under attack, they must recourse to the law and not engage in jungle justice. This is not a banana republic.”
The Commissioner further warned that ‘’operatives are working round the clock and will not waver for a second should anyone be found wanting in the unfortunate situation we find ourselves.’’
‘’As a Government, we will not shy away from confronting threats to peace, law and order. We will also not shy away from taking hard decisions that will better common good and public interest.
‘’ As a Government working for the peace, security, unity and progress of Kaduna State, we will not toy with our constitutional and statutory responsibility,’’ he added.
According to Aruwan, the Government of Kaduna State and security agencies have been doing their best to stem the tide of the incessant bloodshed in Kajuru local government.
‘’As a serious minded government, together with the security agencies, we have had cause to meet with the Adara and Fulani youths, District Head, Ward Heads and Ardos at different meetings to appeal for peace and restraint from self-help,’’ he said.
The Commissioner recalled that all parties have read different narratives from all sides with counter accusations and all the sides coming with exonerating narratives at such meetings.
Aruwan reiterated ‘’that from security reports and intelligence gathering, bad eggs are everywhere and responsible for our predicaments. We must work hard to free our humanity from the clutches of evil-minded individuals who want violence and killings to be entrenched in our communities.’’
‘’There is no justification for killings and maiming people on their farms or homes. People in their huts or while grazing are attacked and killed for no reasons but sheer cruelty and evil. We must rise and support Government and security agencies in tackling this unwholesome trend.
‘’What we are experiencing here is inhumanity perpetrated by criminals, and criminals must not be shielded with religious and ethnic identities. They must be identified as criminals and treated as such via retribution as contained in the law. Criminality is not related to religion, ethnicity or any affiliations but is simply borne out wicked intentions of the villainous elements amongst us,’’ he argued.
The Commissioner who assured that government, security agencies and people of conscience will continue to work for peace, law, and order, appealed to ‘’ the youths to take advantage of deepening peace because the future is ours and we must first guarantee our today.’’
‘’As a government, our vision is one of peace, security and prosperity in Kajuru. We have abundant political will to see that vision realized. We will not relent. We are committed to security as a foundation for your sustainable development,’’ he said.
Aruwan pointed out that Kajuru is a rural local government area whose citizens are farmers, adding that ‘’what will become of them if they can’t farm, if they can’t graze and can’t move freely?’’
According to him, the community will be heading for economic stagnation if this cycle of violence continues ‘’and we must turn the tide for the sake of our collective progress and wellbeing.’’
‘’ Anyone who convinces us to take up arms and kill each other does not mean well for us and our communities. We should be careful about riding on the back of a tiger. When you promote violence, remember you are riding on the back of a tiger, and it will consume you someday. In a nutshell no one is exempted, eventually,’’ he argued.
Aruwan warned that ‘’Government has charged security agencies to continue to be swift, decisive, neutral and impartial in dealing with criminality in any guise. Killing, destruction of property and other such acts as we have seen in the last few days will not be countenanced.’’
Speaking at the event, the State Director State Security Service(SSS), Idris Koya, urged stakeholders to always contact security agents with vital information at their Kajuru local government office or visit the state office.
Also speaking, the Commissioner of Police Kaduna State, Alhaji Umar Musa Muri, promised to look into issues of logistics and personnel, adding that 10,000 police men passed out recently and Kajuru will be highly considered in their posting.
The Commander of 1 Div. Garrison Brig- Gen. OS. Abai, advised stakeholders to identify trouble makers even before a crisis. He appealed for unity among people in the community.
The Executive Chairman of Kajuru local government, Hon. Cafra Caino reminded the gathering on the existing ban on all hunting expeditions. He pleaded with the state government to construct roads in some interior parts of the local government to aid security personnel to easily have access to communities in case of emergencies.