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The Northern Governors Forum has condemned, in strong terms, Wednesday night’s attacks in Southern Kaduna in which about 22 persons were reportedly killed.
The attacks were carried out in four Atyap villages in Zangon Kataf Local Government Area (LGA) of Kaduna State by yet to be arrested gunmen.
A statement issued by Dr. Simon Makut Mancha, the Director of Press and Communication Affairs to the Chairman of the Forum and Governor of Plateau State Simon Bako Lalong, said the persistent attacks on villages in the area in spite of the efforts by the Kaduna State Government and security agencies to end the violence, raises serious concern and condemnation.
Lalong said the recent attacks showed the desperate attempt by criminal elements to not only cause pain and sorrow among innocent citizens but also frustrate the efforts of the Kaduna State Government at fostering peace and harmony.
He said: “We are deeply saddened by this cycle of violence and blood-letting that is carried out against unarmed and helpless people. This is reprehensible and regrettable.
“While we call on the security agencies to rise up to the occasion and apprehend these criminals, we also encourage the citizens to assist with relevant intelligence that will lead to the arrest of these blood thirsty people.”
Governor Lalong also said that the Northern Governors Forum maintains its position that any group or individual that is aggrieved for whatsoever reason should seek redress through official channels than resort to self-help, which only exacerbates crises and instability.
The Northern Governors Forum commiserated with the victims of the crises and the Government of Kaduna State, pledging its support to Governor Nasir El-Rufai as he works with all stakeholders to bring the incessant crises to an end.
The Executive Secretary of the Nigeria Christian Pilgrims Commission (NCPC), Rev. Yakubu Pam, on Thursday sued for peace in the troubled communities in Southern Kaduna.
Pam warned that the killings in the state should not be handled with sentiments, adding that rather than apportion blames, all hands must be on deck to secure the lives of innocent Nigerians, particularly the people of Southern Kaduna.
Pam, who gave the advice during a condolence visit to the governor of Kaduna State, Nasiru El Rufai, said: “I am deeply touched with the recent turn of events in Southern Kaduna where innocent lives perished due to the crisis that rocked the area.”
The NCPC helmsman, who is also the Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Northern Nigeria, commended the critical stakeholders in the state, particularly, Governor Nasiru El Rufai for the proactive steps taken so far to protect and secure the lives of innocent persons in the rural communities of Kaduna State.
He said: “I am here in my capacity as a religious leader in Northern Nigeria and your humble brother who desire enduring peace and unity in the country and in Kaduna State.”
The NCPC boss called on critical stakeholders in search of lasting peace in the country to harmonise ideas and brainstorm over the issues with the aim of finding a lasting solution to the problem.
He assured the Kaduna State governor that he would do everything possible to partner with eminent religious bodies such as the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Jama’ atu Nasiru Islam (JNI), Mayeti A’llah Cattle Breeders Association, community leaders and indigenous people in Southern Kaduna in a “frank and open dialogue to help bring out genuine suggestions towards resolving the crisis”.
He called on all the interventionist agencies to urgently reach out to the affected communities across the local governments that were recently displaced so as to address their plight.
The cleric admonished the indigenous people of Southern Kaduna to remain calm and report to the security agencies any suspicious activities or persons working to unleash terror or undermining the peace and security of the people.
According to a statement issued by the NCPC spokesman, Celestine Toruka, the Kaduna State governor commended the reconciliatory role Rev Pam and the Northern CAN are playing in addressing the ugly situation in Southern Kaduna.
He assured that he would continue to do everything within the ambit of the law to secure the lives and property of the people of Kaduna State, particularly the residents of Southern Kaduna.
El Rufai promised to constantly engage critical stakeholders in the state with a view to putting an end to the killing of innocent people, assuring that perpetrators of the heinous crime would be brought to justice.
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