The Middle Belt Forum, MBF, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to declare a state of emergency on Kaduna State.
According to the forum the governor, Nasir El-Rufai has shown incapacity to maintain peace.
The forum also called on security forces to create necessary synergies with attacked communities through the establishment of local vigilante groups to track down criminals that have declared war on the people.
A statement issued by the National President of the forum, Pogu Bitrus, the call became necessary arising from the glaring failures by Governor El-Rufai to protect lives and property of the citizens of the state.
The forum noted that the most worrisome is the attitude of Governor
El-Rufai towards tackling the security challenges confronting the state, stressing that he has refused to negotiate with kidnappers, he has also not done anything to secure these weak communities against further attacks on vulnerable communities.
According to the forum, “More than anytime, Governor El-Rufai has continued to provoke bandits through unguarded utterances that have further enraged them to unleash more terror attacks on various communities.”
The forum added that the most disturbing is the recent abduction of over 120 students of Bethel Baptist High School in Damishi that is located in the outskirts of Kaduna, adding that these minors are still being held captive in the forest with no food, shelter or medication.
“This new wave of attacking schools by the bandits appeared to be in the agenda of Boko Haram and is aimed at frustrating the education of future generations upon whose shoulders lie the future greatness of our nation,” the forum lamented.
The Middle Belt Forum, MBF, said it is deeply worried by the ugly security situation in the country, especially Kaduna State where the rising spate of insecurity has continued to degenerate on a daily basis.
It observed that communities across various local government areas in the state have come under unending severe attacks resulting in gruesome massacres, raping of women, destruction of property, pointing out that incessant kidnappings made worse by huge payments of ransom to secure the release of abducted persons and displacement of thousands of people out of their homelands.
The statement explained that the scenario has become the new norm in Kaduna State, the political authorities seem either incapable of dealing with these security challenges or deliberately unwilling to stop the recurring bloody tide headlong, thereby suggesting complicity on their part.
According to the statement, more worrisome is the fact that attacks by these killer herdsmen and Fulani kidnappers on defenceless communities have led to massive displacement of people from their ancestral lands, thereby creating a catastrophic humanitarian crisis situation and rendering farmers unable to access their farmlands for agricultural activities.
It noted that the current attacks on schools have also led to the withdrawal of pupils and students from schools or outright closure of such schools, noting that the negative consequences of these on education and food security can only be imagined.
The statement noted that in most instances, the kidnappers have taken over all the routes linking Kaduna State to other parts of the country where they have continued to unleash terror on road users, saying that these criminals are not only engaged in abducting farmers from their farmlands, but have also resorted to breaking homes at night to abduct people.
Sometimes, according to the statement, members of an entire family are kidnapped and herded into the forest where relatives of victims are forced to pay unimaginable amounts of money in ransom, and oftentimes, some abducted persons are killed even after such ransoms are paid, saying that this trend has triggered massive relocation of residents who now abandon homes they had built with retirement entitlements and now squat in crowded neighborhoods only waiting to be further invaded.
It noted that of recent instances, two nurses were abducted from the Idon General Hospital in Kajuru LGA of Kaduna State on April 22, 2021 were just released after the payment of over N10 million to the kidnappers and other materials given to the kidnappers.
The statement added that on Monday July 5, 2021, the daredevil kidnapper also launched an attack on the National Tuberculosis and Leprosy Centre in Zaria where they abducted 10 persons, including five nurses, infants, and their mothers.
It said on May 21, 2021, about 77 members of the Libere community (including women and children) in Kajuru LGA were abducted when they returned to their ancestral land after taking refuge in an Internally Displaced Persons, IDP, camp since May 2020, adding that the incident has never had any mention from the regular security updates routinely issued by the government of Kaduna State while the abductors are demanding N350 million as ransom.
It explained that at the weekend, Warkan village in Zangon Kataf LGA was attacked and nine persons including four children, three women were killed just as no fewer than 13 homes were completely razed down.
It added that again, on Friday, June 21, 2021, Ungwan Madaki community in Chikun LGA, an outskirts of Kaduna, was attacked by the cold-blooded criminals who killed two persons and kidnapped 26 others, including infants, adding that four of the victims have been killed over inability to pay the ransom, while 22 persons are still languishing in the den of their captors.