The Senate yesterday faulted the gruesome killings and incessant attacks on communities in Kaduna State, alleging that the heinous acts are being perpetrated due to government negligence and conspiracy by the elites. Specifically, the lawmakers accused the state governor, Nasir el-Rufai of complacency, even as they questioned the governor’s absence during the attacks, saying the governor fiddled like Nero while Rome was on fire. The Senators said the recent attacks and killings in the state are indicative of religious and ethnic violence, which relevant leaders are not rising against it. The Senate said it is seriously disturbed that gruesome and mindless killings are being carried out in communities across the country, with relevant security agencies and particularly the executive arm of government, deliberately refusing to evolve proactive measures to contain it. Senate President Bukola Saraki who led the Senators to observe a minute silence in honour of the departed souls said it is high time the security problem in the land is contained.
The upper chamber noted that government is shielding those behind the dastardly act and that except the killers are fished out, the country will know no peace. The lawmakers said security agencies are not discharging effectively their responsibility of intelligence gathering, challenging them to act responsively.
The position of the Senators was sequel to a motion by Senator Suleiman Hunkuyi (Kaduna North) on the unfortunate, inhuman and unnecessary killings in Kaduna State. Leading the debate, Hunkuyi explained that the motion became imperative to inform Nigerians to note the senseless killings and general insecurity situation in the state. According to him, the recent attacks on Kasuwan Mageni community of Kaduna State witnessed scores of people killed and a paramount ruler abducted. In his contribution, Senator Shehu Sani (PRP Kaduna Central) condemned the attacks and killings in its entirety, stating that the situation will persist unless the people embrace peace and tolerance. He said it is rightful time hate speech and divisibility are avoided to foster tranquility. Also, Senator Danjuma La’ar (Kaduna South) said, “All the crisis in Kaduna state are caused by the governor (el-Rufai)”, just as he alleged that the elites know the killers but are only hiding from revealing them. Other lawmakers who spoke on the matter include Sam Egwu (Ebonyi North), Kabir Marafa (Zamfara Central) and Philip Gyunka (Nasarawa North). They all condemned the killings and charged security agencies to arrest and prosecute the assailants. Consequently, the Senate resolved to immediately constitute a central committee to interface with the executive arm of government so as to evolve adequate security measures and end the killings. While calling on Kaduna State government and the federal government to quicken the process of releasing the abducted traditional ruler, Senate further urged NEMA to assist those in need, provide food and medicals to the affected persons.
The Red Chamber also directed security agencies to proffer solutions to permanently avert the killings, just as it called for the implementation of recommendations of the Senate on the national security summit.
Kaduna Govt Reviews Curfew, Now From Dusk To Dawn
Meanwhile, the Kaduna State government yesterday reduced the total restriction of movement imposed on Kaduna town and environs to dust-to-dawn curfew. A statement issued by Governor Nasir el-Rufai’s spokesman, Samuel Aruwan, said that from today residents of Kaduna are free to pursue their legitimate businesses from 6am to 5pm, while the period of curfew would be from 5pm to 6am daily until further notice. LEADERSHIP recalls that Kaduna State government had imposed a 24-hour curfew on the state capital and environs last Sunday following the outbreak of violence in which at least 22 people were reportedly killed. Aruwan urged residents to report any suspicious activity to the security agencies and to refrain from spreading rumours and unverified information.
He added that the government would not hesitate to re-impose a 24-hour curfew in the event of any breach of the peace. The statement reads: “The Kaduna State government took the decision to review the curfew hours following a meeting today (yesterday) of a select committee of the State Security Council. The heads of the security agencies reported significant progress in restoring calm and commended residents for the peaceful manner in which they conducted themselves during the four-hour relaxation of the curfew in parts of Kaduna yesterday.
“Government expects normal banking and other services to resume, and markets to open as normal as from tomorrow (today). The security agencies will remain vigilant and continue to protect residents. Intensive surveillance of known pockets of potential trouble is also continuing, by troops on the ground and by helicopter patrols.”
It warned residents to observe the nighttime curfew hours, to keep the peace and to cooperate with the security agencies in order to keep the state safe, just as it urged community leaders to ensure that hoodlums and other potential threats to peace are promptly reported to the security agencies