Southern Kaduna: President Buhari Orders Strong Action

Southern Kaduna: President Buhari Orders Strong Action President Muhammadu Buhari has been giving instructions for decisive measures aimed at bringing an end to the recurring acts of violence and destruction in the Southern part of Kaduna State.

President Buhari has equally directed the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to carry out a joint assessment of the situation with the sister agency in Kaduna, SEMA, to determine the level of response required for urgent aid to the victims of the violence.

This is according to Presidential Spokesperson, Garba Shehu.

According to him, the Inspector-General of Police, on the directive of President Buhari, was in the region on Saturday and Sunday to assess the situation at first hand.

“In addition to the conventional policemen deployed in the area, a squadron of mobile policemen has now been stationed there.

The Nigerian Army is also in the process of setting up two battalions in Southern Kaduna while the military continues to carry out air surveillance across flash points of the area.

“These measures should soon ensure the return of normalcy to the region, while the Kaduna State government continues its peace building efforts,” he stated.

The President commended efforts of the State government and the security agencies in the steps taken so far to curtail the violence.

President Buhari has, once again, sent condolences to the people of Southern Kaduna, who have lost loved ones in the recent violence.

Kaduna Relaxes Curfew In Two Local Councils

military-curfewThe Kaduna State government has relaxed the 24-hour curfew imposed last December on Jema’a and Zangon-Kataf Local Government Areas of the state with immediate effect.

A statement issued by the spokesman for the governor, Samuel Aruwan, at the end of the State Security Council meeting, said improvements in the security situation in the two local government areas informed the decision to relax the curfew.

However, the Council said the 24-hour curfew remained effective in Kaura Local Government Area.

The statement read: “The decision to relax the curfew in Jema’a and Zangon Kataf Local Government Areas and its continuation in Kaura Local Government Area was unanimously taken after deliberation and review of security situation in the three local government areas and the entire state.

“Security agencies have also been empowered to arrest individuals and groups found violating the curfew.

“The Security Council urges security operatives to ensure enforcement using best practices”.

The curfew in Jema’a and Zangon Kataf local government areas is now for 12 hours daily, from 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. local time.

Fulanis From Foreign Lands

Medical and health personnel carrying out essential services are exempted from the curfew which was imposed in December 2016, after repeated attacks on communities in the area.

The Kaduna State Security Council is chaired by Governor Nasir Ahmad El-Rufai and its members include the Deputy Governor, Mr Barnabas Bala, Kaduna State Commissioner of Police, Agyole Abeh, Director of the Department of State Services, Mohammed Wakili and Brigadier General I. Isa, Garrison Commander, One Division Garrison, Nigerian Army.

Others are Rear Admiral TT Dakwat, Commandant Nigerian Navy School of Armament, Kachia and AVM Bello Garba, Base Commander, Nigerian Air Force, Kaduna.

The governor of the state Nasir El-Rufai had said that the perpetrators of the attacks were Fulanis from foreign lands taking vengeance for their kins killed years ago.

Army Intervenes To Restore Order In Southern Kaduna

Army Intervenes To Restore Order In Southern KadunaAs part of the measures aimed at restoring law and order in Southern Kaduna, the Nigerian Army says it plans to site a military establishment in the area for quick response.

The Director Army Public Relations, Brigadier-General Sani Usman said this, adding that the Army is working with other security agencies as well as the civilian population to restore peace and promote tolerance in the area.

“I want to inform you that the Nigerian Army is fully deployed in the southern part of Kaduna state, and just yesterday we further reinforced that.

“And we have gone beyond that; we have also embarked on civil military activities and we are working hand-in-gloves, with other security agencies, particularly the Nigerian Police, Department of State Services and other military, paramilitary agencies deployed, as well as community and traditional and religious leaders.

“Be assured that the Nigerian Army is fully on ground in the southern oart of Kaduna state.”

He said that with the siting of a military establishment, the Army would be better equipped to avert any form of bloodshed in the area.

Southern Kaduna Attacks: Police To Set Up Mobile Unit In Kafanchan

Ibrahim Idris, Police, Rivers RerunThe Nigerian Police Force says it will set up a Mobile Squadron Unit in Kafanchan, as part of efforts to stop the frequent attacks in the southern part of Kaduna State.

The plan was announced on Saturday by the Inspector General of Police, Mr Ibrahim Idris, during a fact finding mission to Kafanchan, headquarters of Jema’a Local Government Area in the northeastern State.

Mr Idris, who also inaugurated a committee to investigate the recent attacks on Goska, Ninte and other villages in the area, vowed that perpetrators of the attacks would be fished out and prosecuted accordingly.

Many communities have come under attack by gunmen suspected to be herdsmen in the southern part of Kaduna State in the past eight months.
The attacks have claimed several lives and property, with thousands of people sacked from their homes.

After a tour of the communities attacked by suspected herdsmen, the Police boss met with the villagers and leaders of the Fulani community. At the meeting, however, a mild disagreement ensued between them, as to who was responsible for the attacks. While some blame the traditional leaders for the unrest, others accused politicians of being responsible.

Addressing the people, Mr Idris noted that the wanton destruction of lives and property in the past months in southern Kaduna had more of a political than religious undertone.

He commiserated with those who had lost loved ones and properties to the unrest, but added that the situation had been blown out of proportion.

“From the discussion I had with Kaduna State Governor, Malam Nasir El-Rufai, we have decided to station a mobile police base in Kafanchan.

“We are here to see things for ourselves so that we have a lasting peace in the whole area,” he said.

The IG said a panel had been set up to investigate the crisis in the area thoroughly, including the allegation that 800 people were killed in the crisis.

Mr Idris said most of the leadership of the villages had a lot to contribute to peace and unity of the area.

“Some of the community leaders need to be cautioned. They are contributing to creating situation that does not exist,” he said.

He said the police were committed to restoring lasting peace and later met with community leaders in the area.

Over 700 Mobile policemen have been deployed to Kafanchan to maintain law and order in southern Kaduna.

The visit by the IGP is perhaps not the first by any top security or government official to area.

Beyond the visitation, what the people want to see is lasting peace and perhaps government’s intervention in the areas of rehabilitation of destroyed houses to enable them go back to their normal lives.

El-Rufai Lauds Amina Mohammed’s UN Appointment

El-Rufai Lauds Amina Mohammed’s UN AppointmentKaduna state Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, has commended the appointment of Amina Mohammed as the Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations.

The Governor, in a congratulatory message he issued on Sunday through his Spokesman, Samuel Aruwan, described Mrs Mohammed’s appointment as an excellent choice.

The Governor said that the appointment of the Minister of Environment as UN Deputy Secretary General,  is due to  “her honourable service to Nigeria and her substantial contribution to efforts to empower people and safeguard the planet.

“Just one year as Environment Minister, she has put environmental issues on the front burner of Nigeria’s political discourse.

“She has undoubtedly earned the trust and respect of not just Nigerians but environmentalists the world over.

“At the core of Amina’s work and passion is the welfare and right of citizens to peace and security wherever they may be.

“She addressed those challenges while serving in the government of President Obasanjo, then as Special Adviser to UN Secretary-General, Ban ki Moon and recently as Minister under President Buhari.

“As a global ambassador, she now gets to display her phenomenal skills on a world stage. Nigeria’s temporary loss is the world’s gain.

“President Buhari has made a great sacrifice in releasing Amina from the federal cabinet for service at the global level.

“Her appointment is a tribute to the President’s judgment in recruiting such a globally-respected personality.”

Governor El-Rufai urged Mrs. Mohammed to advance the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in her new role, stating that he had no doubt that Amina Mohammed would continue to make Nigeria proud at the global level.

“Her tenacity and the passion she applied to secure global agreement on the SDGs will be required to get them implemented,” he added.

El-Rufai Seeks America’s Support To Develop Kaduna State

Nasir El-Rufai, Kaduna State, USKaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, has sought the assistance of the United States government in the development of education, health and agriculture sectors in the state.

He made the appeal when he received the American Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Stuart Symington, who was accompanied by embassy officials and leadership of the Nigerian-American Chambers of Commerce at his office in the Kaduna State capital.

Governor El-Rufai, who solicited for more foreign investments that would create more jobs for youths, revealed that the state was battling with some security challenges such as rural banditry and kidnapping caused by lack of education and opportunities.

He, however, said that with the support of the state’s bilateral relations with the US, UK and the European Union, his administration was doing all it can to address these challenges and give the teeming youths the opportunities they require to be successful and stay away from crime.

Mr Symington, in his remarks said he was in Kaduna State to note the challenges of the state.

He assured the Governor that his country would sustain its partnership with Kaduna State because of the strategic importance of the state in national development.

Kaduna Government Labels IMN Insurgent Group

Kaduna Govt. Begins Construction Of Township RoadsThe Kaduna State government has described the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN), as an insurgent group.

The government’s position was contained in a white paper released on Monday, on the report of the Judicial Commission of Inquiry into the December 2015 clash, between soldiers and members of the IMN in Zaria.

The white paper also blamed the group for the clash and recommended the investigation and prosecution of any of its members found to have been involved in any form of human rights abuse, since their existence in Zaria over 30 years ago.

The government’s white paper however absolved the Nigerian army from any act of human right violation in the Zaria clash, insisting that the army abides by the rules of engagement.

This is not the first in the series of statements and orders made against the Islamic group.

In October, the Kaduna State Government had issued an order declaring the IMN as an unlawful association.

Also in November, the Kaduna state Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, had expressed concern that the group, also known as the Shiites Islamic sect, if allowed to exist, is capable of threatening the corporate existence of the country.

According to him, the group has an agenda to cause a religious conflict in Nigeria.

Meanwhile, the group in a swift reaction by its spokesman Ibrahim Musa, rejected the white paper describing it as an exercise in futility by the Kaduna state governor, who according to him is trying to justify what they describe as the massacre by the army in 2015.

The Shiites have continued to protest against the detention of their leader, Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky, who has been in custody since December 13, 2015.

A federal high court in Abuja has however ordered the Department of State Services (DSS), to release the leader of the outlawed Islamic movement in Nigeria, within 45 days.

 

Ondo Election: AD Raises Threat Alarm On Olusola Oke

Olusola Oke, AD, Ondo ElectionThe Olusola Oke Campaign Organisation has cried out to President Muhammadu Buhari to save its standard bearer, Olusola Oke, from a cabal within his government.

They claim the group is bent on stopping at all cost, the candidate of the Alliance for Democracy (AD), Olusola Oke, from contesting in the November 26 Ondo State governorship election by resorting to underhand methods.

Addressing a press conference in Akure on Tuesday, the Director General of the organisation, Bola Ilori, specifically pointed out some of the supposed arrowheads of the plot.

They include: Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El Rufai; Minister of Works, Babatunde Fashola; Minister of Solid Minerals, Dr. Kayode Fayemi and the Ogun State Governor, Ibikunle Amosun among others.

Ilori accused the so-called cabal in the All Progressives Congress (APC) of instigating the AD Legal Adviser, a man who is not a candidate in the forthcoming election, to institute a suit in the court.

He also alleged that the APC was planning to instigate the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to invite and possibly detain Mr Oke days before the election over phantom allegations.

The campaign organisation head stated that their candidate had been severally investigated and cleared by the EFCC of any financial impropriety.

EU Urges Nigeria To Stop Gas Flaring by 2030

Michel-Arrion-European-Union-EUThe European Union, (EU) has urged the Nigerian Government to ensure that it fulfills its commitment to stop gas flaring by 2030.

The EU Ambassador to Nigeria and West Africa Michel Arion, stated this on Thursday during a film presentation on Nigeria’s environmental and climatic challenges at the Government House in Kaduna State.

He reiterated EU’s continuous support to Nigeria and other vulnerable developing countries in Africa to fight climate change.

While stating that a substantial amount of fund would be deployed to tackle environmental pollution as gas flaring and deforestation, Mr. Arion expressed confidence that the reduction of gas flaring and other environmental challenges would mitigate the effects of climate change in Nigeria.

He also explained that climate change does not affect Africa alone but the entire universe, and that climate change is compatible with economic growth.

He however, stressed the need for the Nigerian Government to come up with effective laws and policies to deal with environmental issues.

The EU Ambassador also emphasized the need for Nigeria to improve its electricity supply which he says will reduce climate change.

Every year, Nigeria loses about 351,000 hectres of land to emerging desert encroachment. In the northern part of the country, deforestation and desert encroachment are some of the major problems that people from the region are battling with. It is the same situation in the southeast where many communities are facing eviction due to erosion.

In the Niger Delta region, gas flaring, oil spillage and ocean surge are also posing a major environmental and health challenge, while population explosion has also led to increased quest for land farming and grazing of animals.

In all these, fishing, farming and other human activities are affected.

According to environmental experts, Nigeria accounts for one sixth of gas flaring in the world, and this is they say is largely responsible for some health issues like cancer and leukemia.

Meanwhile the Kaduna state Governor, Nasir El-Rufai stressed the need for every citizen to understand the dangers of climate change and how to mitigate it.

He expressed fear that the level of desert encroachment and desertification in northern Nigeria, if not curtailed by relevant authorities, could pose a major environmental challenge in the region.

To address these challenges, the Governor explained that his administration has launched a tree planting campaign with over one million trees already planted across the 255 wards in the state to checkmate afforestation.

Godogodo Village Attack: Death Toll Rises To 44

godogodo, death toll, kadunaThe death toll from the attack on Godogodo village in Kaduna state, northwest Nigeria has risen from 20 to 44.

Gunmen invaded Godogodo village on Saturday night, shooting sporadically and setting buildings ablaze.

At least 20 people were killed and property destroyed during the attack. This led to the imposition of a dusk to dawn curfew in the village in Jema’a Local Government Area of Kaduna state.

But during a visit to the area by the state government officials, led by the Deputy Governor, Mr Bala Bantex, the residents revealed that the armed men unleashed violence again on the community early on Monday.

They accused security agents of not responding quickly to the numerous calls for help by the residents while the violence lasted.

Meanwhile the state government has promised to alleviate the suffering of the victims, through the intervention of the National and State Emergency Management Agencies.

The state’s Deputy Governor, Bala Bantex, advised residents to remain calm, just as government officials began an assessment of the extent of damage done.

Govt. Imposes 24-Hour Curfew After Gunmen Killed 20 Persons In Kaduna

Attack on Community in KadunaAt least 20 persons have been killed and property destroyed in an attack by unknown armed bandits on Godogodo village in Jemaa Local Government Area of Kaduna State in northern Nigeria.

An indigene of the local government told Channels Television, that the gunmen invaded Godogodo village On Saturday night shooting sporadically and setting buildings ablaze.

“In the process they killed 20 persons while several others were injured,” the indigene said.

“The entire community has been deserted. Residents have fled from their homes for fear of being attacked by the armed bandits,” he added.

The gunmen were said to have also ambushed a police patrol team in the area on Friday evening, opened fire on them and in the process killed two policemen and injured one.

The spokesman for the police in the state, Aliyu Usman, confirmed the attack to Channels Television’s correspondent, Chimezie Enyiocha.

He says the State Police Command is assessing the situation to ascertain the number of casualties.

More mobile and conventional policemen have been deployed to Godogodo, Kafanchan and other neighbouring communities to restore order and prevent further escalation of the crisis.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

In the meantime, a dusk to dawn curfew has been imposed in the affected areas by the interim Chairman of Jemaa Local Government Area, Mr Humble Katuka, until normalcy returns to the area.

In his reaction to the attack, the State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, described the incident as barbaric, inhumane and unwarranted.

Speaking through his Deputy, Mr Bala Bantex, the governor appealed to residents of the community to remain calm and law abiding, assuring them that the government would do everything within its powers to restore peace in the area.

He also cautioned them not to embark in any form of reprisal attacks.

Communities in Jemaa Local Government and Sanga Local Government Areas in Kaduna State have witnessed series of attacks that have left scores of people dead.

In August this year, gunmen attacked three villages, Godogodo, Akwa’a and Anguwan Anjo.

Eleven persons were killed in that attack, with several houses and farmlands destroyed.

El-Rufai Supports Auction Of Non-Productive National Assets

Kaduna, Nasir El-Rufai, AssetsAs the controversy to privatise some of Nigeria’s assets rages on, Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, says a sale to boost liquidity would be in order.

The Governor, who is a former Director-General of the Bureau for Public Enterprise (BPE), made the observation on Tuesday in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.

However, he recommended that only non-productive assets should be sold.

Governor El-Rufai also condemned critics of the proposed plan whom he said should not just take ideological positions to analyse the privatisation.

Instead, he asked them to propose solutions to help Nigeria out of its present economic recession.

Area Of Focus

Meanwhile, an economist, Mr Bayo Rotimi, has highlighted the area of focus the government should consider in its proposed privatisation plan.

He advised the government to focus on institutions “that have constituted themselves into a drain pipe on the national treasury”, especially those that the Nigerian tax payers were keeping afloat.

Mr Rotimi also asked Nigerians to hold the government accountable on how the proceeds from the sale of assets would be utilised.

He criticised the idea of individual ministries selling their own assets, stressing that “the law has empowered the National Council on Privatisation (NCP) and the BPE to carry that out”.

The economist further emphasised the need for the preferred bidders to have the required technical capacity, the ‘management know how’ and the financial muscle to run the institutions effectively.