Banditry: IGP Deploys Additional Policemen To Kaduna-Abuja Highway

Policemen undergoing training before their deployment to the Abuja-Kaduna Highway on June 22, 2022.

 

The Inspector-General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba, has deployed additional policemen to boost security along the Abuja-Kaduna Highway and tackle banditry and kidnapping.

Addressing the personnel on Wednesday at the Force Headquarters shortly before their deployment, the Commissioner of Police in charge of Police Mobile Force, CP Matthew Akinyoshola urged the mobile policemen to be vigilant and alert at all times in their areas of responsibility.

He warned the Policemen to be civil and firm in the performance of their duties while dealing decisively with all persons threatening the peace and security of the nation.

READ ALSO: Bandits Attack Kaduna Communities, Kidnap At Least 36 Persons

The Abuja-Kaduna highway has been experiencing series of attacks by bandits who maim and kill innocent motorists as well as kidnap residents of the area.

Despite repeated assurances by the Federal Government and the Kaduna State Government, with the deployment of security operatives, including soldiers, the bandits have continued to have a field day.

On Sunday, no fewer than 36 people were kidnapped by bandits who attacked four communities in the Kajuru Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

Residents of the area told security agencies that the constant attacks have affected their means of livelihood, as they can no longer go to their farms to avoid being killed or kidnapped by the bandits.

They appealed  to the Federal Government to establish a military base in Kajuru as the only way the security situation could be addressed.

Falana Sues NRC, AGF, Seeks Stoppage Of Train Services On Abuja-Kaduna Route

Falana Writes AGF, Requests Release Of 10 People From ‘Navy Detention’
Human rights lawyer and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Femi Falana

 

Human rights lawyer and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria Femi Falana on Friday filed a lawsuit at the Federal High Court in Abuja seeking to stop the Nigerian Railway Corporation from resuming train services on the Abuja-Kaduna route until the railway lines are adequately protected from attacks by bandits and terrorists.

Also joined in the suit is another human rights lawyer, Marshal Abubakar.

Both activists filed the suit on Friday ahead of the now-botched planned resumption of train services on the Abuja-Kaduna route on Monday, March 28.

READ ALSO: NRC Cancels Resumption Of Train Services On Abuja-Kaduna Route

The suit against the NRC, the Minister of Transportation, and the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, declared that the Respondents on the matter, are bound to secure the railway lines linking Kaduna State to Abuja (and indeed all other railways lines in Nigeria) against armed attacks by Boko Haram terrorists, kidnappers, and other armed groups before the recommencement of railway transportation services.

The lawsuit relied on Section 33 of the 1999 Constitution and Article 4 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights Act, Cap A9 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria which guarantee that every person living in Nigeria is entitled to the protection of their fundamental right to life.

In the suit with file number,  FHC/ABJ/CS/22,  the applicants declared that the brutal killing of unarmed passengers in the Abuja – Kaduna bound train by armed gangs/Boko Haram terrorists on the 28th day of March 2022 is illegal and unconstitutional as it violates the fundamental right of the deceased to life guaranteed by Section 14 (2) (b), 15 (3) (b), 33 and 43 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

They however asked for the relief of the court mandating the Respondents to protect the lives and properties of every passenger plying the Kaduna- Abuja Railway lines(and indeed all other railway lines in Nigeria) by recruiting adequate security personnel and security gadgets to guard and protect every of such passengers utilizing the public railway transportation system in Nigeria.

They also sought an order of the court prohibiting the Corporation and the Federal Ministry of Transportation from recommencing railways services on the Kaduna- Abuja route until adequate security and requisite gadgets are provided to ensure the safety and protection of lives and properties on the route.

Other reliefs sought by the Applicants is for the court to mandate the Respondents officials, whose alleged criminal negligence caused the bomb attack on the Abuja-Kaduna train on March 28, 2022, should be investigated and prosecuted.

Kaduna Train Attack: Falana Accuses Amaechi, NRC MD Of Negligence, Calls For Their Prosecution

Minister of Transportation Rotimi Amaechi visited the scene of the Abuja-Kaduna train attack on March 29, 2022.
Minister of Transportation Rotimi Amaechi visited the scene of the Abuja-Kaduna train attack on March 29, 2022.

 

A Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) Femi Falana has accused the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, and the Managing Director (MD) of the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) Fidet Okhiria of negligence in the attack on a train plying the Abuja-Kaduna rail line.

He is also calling for their prosecution, according to a statement he issued on Monday.

The legal practitioner referenced reports of attacks on the Abuja-Kaduna rail line and accused the corporation and Amaechi of not taking enough measures to forestall the latest incident.

READ ALSO: Abuja-Kaduna Train Attack: ‘I Warned That Lives Will Be Lost’ – Amaechi

“Although both Messrs Amaechi and Okhiria knew that the Abuja-Kaduna train was not safe they kept on giving passengers a false sense of security.

“Since both of them knew that the tragedy that befell the nation last week was waiting to happen and did not adopt measures to prevent it, the President should direct the Inspector-General of Police to investigate and prosecute them for criminal negligence.

“Meanwhile, both of them should not be allowed to continue to risk the lives of train passengers in the country.”

He said contrary to claims by the NRC that there is no fraud in the sales of train tickets, a ticket racketeering syndicate was arrested in 2019. Since then, he said the NRC has not been able to crack down on other syndicates operating in the Abuja-Kaduna and Lagos-Ibadan train stations.

According to him, the corporation and the ministry is legally bound to bear the cost of treatment for those injured during the incident.

“It is indisputable that the loss of lives, personal injury, and abduction of passengers by the terrorists was caused ‘by want of reasonable care, diligence or skill on the part of the Corporation or its servants’,” he maintained.

“In other words, top officials of the Nigerian Railway Corporation and the Ministry of Transportation are liable for the criminal negligence that caused the bomb attack.”

FEC Observes One Minute Silence For Abuja-Kaduna Train Victims

FEC Observes a minute silence of the Abuja-Kaduna attack victims

 

The Federal Executive Council (FEC) on Wednesday observed a minute silence for the victims of the Abuja-Kaduna train attack.

The meeting which was presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari started at 10am with the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha calling for a minute silence.

He said the attack led to the death of eight persons and over 46 people were injured with many other kidnapped.

About 8 persons were killed and many injured and kidnapped in the attack

The incident happened around on Monday night at Dutse village in Chikun Local Government Area, just a few kilometres from the Rigasa train station, which is the last transit point of the train.

The bandits were said to have opened fire, shot sporadically on the train, and later gained access into the train.

President Muhammadu Buhari at FEC meeting

 

Those in attendance at the FEC meeting are the Vice-President professor Yemi Osinbajo, the Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, National Security Adviser, Maj Gen, Babagana Monguno (retd), and the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Dr Folashade Yemi-Esan.

Some of the ministers who attended virtually

 

Other cabinet members physically attending the meeting are Ministers of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, Finance, Budget and National Planning, Dr. Zainab Ahmed, and Justice, Abubakar Malami, Health, Dr. Ehanire Osagie, Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, Industry, Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo, Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Umar-Faroq.

Others are Minister of Labour and Employment Festus Keyamo, Minister of State Mines and Steel, Uche Ogar while other ministers are attending virtually from their various offices.

CDS, COAS, IGP Visit Scene Of Abuja-Kaduna Train Attack

The service chiefs visit the scene of the Kaduna Train attack.

 

The Inspector-General of Police Usman Alkali Baba, Chief of Defence Staff General Lucky Irabor, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Lieutenant General Faruk Yahaya and other top officials of the Nigerian Railway Corporation, have visited the site of the terrorist attack on a train at Dutse forest in Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna.

The COAS was accompanied by some principal staff officers of the Army Headquarters and the General Officer Commanding 1 Division, on arrival at the scene.

They assessed the security situation around the general area of the attack and inspected the attacked train, as well as the rail track to evaluate the degree of damage.

 

Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Lieutenant General Faruk Yahaya accompanied by some soldiers visit the scene of the Abuja-Kaduna train attack.

 

READ ALSO: IGP, Defence Chief Visit Site Of Kaduna Train Attack

Although the number of causalities is yet to be confirmed, many are feared killed while several others have been kidnapped.

The incident happened around 7:45 pm on Monday at Dutse village in Chikun Local Government Area, just a few kilometres from the Rigasa train station, which is the last transit point of the train.

The bandits were said to have opened fire, shot sporadically on the train, and later gained access to the train.

The COAS however, ordered the troops of the Nigerian Army and other security agencies to intensify their search and rescue operations to ensure that the kidnapped victims are rescued unconditionally.

He assured Nigerians that the troops will be undeterred and vehement in the fight against banditry and other forms of criminality.

Speaking further, he urged members of the surrounding communities and all Nigerians to continue to avail troops with credible information to enhance their operations across the country.

General Yahaya observed that the attack reverberates the need for critical stakeholders to review the security of railways across the country in order to achieve the desired security architecture for railway transportation.

Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Lieutenant General Faruk Yahaya on Tuesday visited the scene of the Abuja-Kaduna train attack.

 

Meanwhile, some victims of the attack have been admitted to the 44 Military Hospital and St. Gerald hospital in Kaduna State.

It is not yet clear how many persons were injured but the train was reportedly carrying over 900 passengers.

At least seven people are feared dead and many are believed to have been abducted by the terrorists.

The state governor, Nasir El-Rufai has visited some of the victims receiving treatment at the hospitals.

One of those in the hospital is former Deputy Governor of Zamfara State, Ibrahim Wakkala, has sustained gunshot wounds who also sustained gunshot wounds.

According to the spokesperson of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Zamfara State, Yusuf Idris, the former Deputy Governor was initially abducted by the terrorists during the attack but was later rescued by the combined forces of the DSS and Military

It was during the process that he sustained a gunshot injury on the leg.

NRC Suspends Train Operations Along Abuja-Kaduna Route

Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) has suspended operations along the Abuja-Kaduna route

 

The Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) has suspended train operations along the Abuja-Kaduna route.

The Corporation stated this via its official Twitter handle on Tuesday.

“Dear passengers, due to unforeseen circumstances, Train operations along the Abuja-Kaduna route has been temporarily suspended. Further Communication would be given in due course,” the tweet read.

The statement follows an attack by gunmen on a train conveying passengers from Abuja to Kaduna on Monday night.

The bandits reportedly attacked the train around the Dutse axis in Kaduna, just a few kilometres from the Rigasa Train Station in Igabi Local Government Area of the state.

One of the passengers on the train told Channels Television that the bandits blew up the train track with an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) which forced the train to derail.

READ ALSO: Troops Secure Abuja-Kaduna Train Attacked By Terrorists – Kaduna Govt

The military immediately swung into action and secured the Kaduna-bound train from Abuja which was attacked by terrorists.

Meanwhile, the Commissioner, Ministry of Internal Security and Home Affairs, Kaduna State,  Samuel Aruwan, disclosed that the evacuation of passengers had been concluded by security forces, officials of Kaduna State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), and the Nigerian Red Cross.

Mr Aruwan noted that the passengers who sustained injuries, and other fatalities, had been moved to hospitals.

Low Passenger Turnout As Train Services Resume On Kaduna-Abuja Route

 

The Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) on Saturday resumed services on the Abuja-Kaduna route two days after it suspended operations following an explosion that rocked a section of the rail track on Wednesday night.

The corporation announced suspension of all operations along the route on Thursday after a train almost suffered a derailment at the Rijanna area of Kaduna due to an explosion on the rail line.

But normal operations resumed at the Rigasa train station in Kaduna on Saturday after the repair of the damaged portion of the track.

READ ALSO: Gunmen Attack Custodial Centre, Free Inmates In Oyo

However, Channels Television observed that there was a low turnout of passengers on the route despite the heavy deployment of more security forces on the train.

Passengers called for more security officials to be deployed along the route to reassure commuters.

Rail travel is perhaps the safest and cheapest option for navigating between Abuja and Kaduna due to the rising insecurity on the highways.

But Wednesday explosion may have created more fears in the minds of rail travellers as commercial motor parks plying the route have been witnessing a high volume of patronage.

Passengers Ask NRC To Boost Security On Kaduna-Abuja Railway

Two Die As Train, Truck Collide In Fagba
File photo

 

Passengers plying the Abuja-Kaduna train service have called on the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) to boost the security on the railways and the roads leading to the Rigasa Train Station in Kaduna State.

The appeals have come in the wake of speculations of an alleged attack on some passengers along the road leading to the train station by suspected bandits.

While many consider railway transport faster and cheaper, it is increasingly becoming a dreaded option because of security threats.

The people have, therefore, called on the government to rise to the occasion and nip the situation in the bud.

Police Recover 413 Cattle From Rustlers Along Abuja – Kaduna Highway

File Photo

The Police Intelligence Response Team (IRT) attached to Operation Absolute Sanity along the Abuja – Kaduna highway has clamped down on a notorious gang known for cattle rustling and kidnap in neighboring villages and towns.

The force in a statement by its Public Relations Officer CSP Jimoh O. Moshood said the team recovered 413 Cattle, 50 Sheep, two locally made AK47 rifles and one pump action gun on Monday.

According to the statement, the cattle rustlers had attempted to ambush the team but after a fierce gun battle that lasted several hours, they were able to gain control and two rustlers were said to have been killed in the process.

“The Intelligence Response Team (IRT) attached to operation absolute sanity on Abuja – Kaduna highway on the 27th November, 2017 at about 0200 hours working on an actionable intelligence provided by the intelligence branch attached to operation absolute sanity swooped on the camps and criminal hideouts of suspected Cattle rustlers at a location inside Kagarko forest, Kaduna State.

“The IRT team came under ambush of Cattle rustlers while in the process of carrying out the raid to arrest the suspects and recover the rustled Cattle. The team repelled the attack and engaged the cattle rustlers in fierce gun battle that lasted several hours in the forest. At the end, two cattle rustlers fell to the superior fire power of the Police Intelligence Response Team while others escaped into the forest with bullet injuries.”

The Force listed the number of the cattle and sheep that were recovered and subsequently returned to their owners after proper identification.

It also called on others who had lost their cattle to the gang and were yet to recover them, to check at the Operation Absolute Sanity base, while stating that it would intensify efforts to arrest the remaining suspects at large and bring them to justice.

Police Parade Fake Soldiers, Others Terrorising Abuja–Kaduna Highway

Nigeria Police Force has arrested some fake soldiers and notorious kidnap suspects terrorising travellers along the Abuja–Kaduna and Abuja–Minna highways.

The suspects were paraded by the Force Public Relations Officer, Jimoh Moshood, on Tuesday at Dikko near Suleja in Niger State.

See photos below;

Travellers Decry Increased Kidnapping Along Kaduna-Abuja Highway

Yobe-RoadRoad users along the Abuja-Kaduna express way have cried out to the government to intervene in what appears to be an increased rate of kidnapping in the axis.

Their complaint follows a recent kidnap of over 10 other persons by gunmen, barely two weeks after the release of a member of the House of Representatives from Kano State who was kidnapped along the same route.

Some of the victims told Channels TV that the kidnappers who disguised themselves in army uniforms on Wednesday, blocked the road and stopped the vehicles they were travelling in before whisking them away inside a bush at gun point.

One of the victims, Danjuma Seriki, narrating his plight said he had to pay a ransome to secure the release of his relation from the kidnappers on Wednesday.

He expressed regret that despite making a formal complaint to the Kaduna State Police Command about the incident, nothing was done to rescue the victims from their abductors.

Following the increase in the spate of attacks, the Inspector General of Police had earlier deployed Special Forces along the road to help curb the menace.

The Police is however, yet to be reached on this recent case.

Kaduna Govt. Bans FRSC Operations In State Capital

Southern Kaduna: El-Rufai Advocates More Funding For Security AgenciesThe Kaduna State Security Council has banned officials of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), from operating in the state capital and other urban centres in the state.

The security council also prohibited FRSC personnel from indiscriminately stopping vehicles for inspection in Kaduna town; a situation which has been responsible for avoidable traffic congestion and accidents.

A statement issued by Spokesman to the Governor, Samuel Aruwan, at the end the state security council meeting , advised FRSC personnel to concentrate their operations in ensuring safe travel on highways such as on the Abuja-Kaduna expressway.

The security council explained that the action became necessary after reviewing the trend and noting concerns expressed by citizens over the undue hardship and accidents people have been exposed to at FRSC checkpoints and from reckless tanker drivers.

Also according to the statement, the council took the decision following complaints about acts of disrespect to the public and alleged extortion from motorists.

On the other hand, the council has also demanded that the transporters should stop loading firewood, tomatoes and other goods on top of petrol tankers throughout the state.

They drew the attention of the public to the threats such practices pose to lives and property.

The Security Council, therefore, mandated security agencies to ensure compliance with those directives, as well as impound defaulting tankers.