Armed herdsmen have reportedly killed at least 85 people during attacks on three communities in Kajuru Local Government Area of Kaduna State.
The killings took place in three communities in the southern part of the state from Sunday to Monday.
The communities include Ungwan Barde and Gamu villages in Kajuru Local Government Area and Gerti, Kaninkon Chiefdom in Jama’a Local Government Area all in the southern part of the state.
The attacks in Ungwan Barde occurred on Sunday morning when suspected Fulani herdsmen invaded the community and killed at least 35 people.
However, the state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Yakubu Sabo, who confirmed the attack on Ungwan Barde in a statement on Monday, said that only 16 persons were killed.
But the former President of the Adara Development Association (ADA), Danladi Yarima, said 35 people were killed in Sunday’s attack on Ungwan Barde.
He also disclosed that the attack on Ungwan Gamu village on Monday left over 46 people dead while about 100 houses were set ablaze by the attackers.
Yarima said two of the corpses, including that of the wife of the pastor of an ECWA church in the village, were recovered in a river.
He said: “We recovered 35 bodies in Ungwan Barde and 46 in Ungwan Gamu. Some people are still missing because they ran into the bush when the Fulani herdsmen invaded the communities. We don’t know whether they are still alive or dead?
“We recovered two corpses in a river including the body of the wife of the pastor of the ECWA church in the village.
“There was massive exodus of women and children from the village as the men evacuated their families to safe zones because the police that were deployed to the community left yesterday (Monday).
“We are calling on the Kaduna State government to do something about the situation to stop the destruction of lives and property.”
At Gerti village in Jama’a Local Government Area, four persons were reported to have been killed in an attack by herdsmen.
The National President of the Kaninkon Development Association, Kolbe Jonathan, said the incident occurred on Sunday. He also said one person was killed on Sunday.
Jonathan added that three others were killed on Monday in an attack during a condolence visit to the family of the person killed the previous day.
However, ADA said in a statement issued in Kaduna yesterday that, “Kajuru land and by extension the Adara nation has been gripped by a fully funded and supported group of terrorists that have been wreaking havoc in our lands for long, while those saddled with the responsibility of securing us deliberately looked the other way.”
The association, in the statement signed by its Assistant National Secretary, Luke Waziri (a lawyer), also called for the release of its leaders arrested during the attack on Ungwan Barde just before the presidential election.
The statement reads in part: “First, Ungwan Barde was attacked on February 10, 2019, and nobody said anything even though those in government knew. Furthermore, the government pretended that the 11 people killed didn’t matter. Then Karamai, another of our communities, was attacked on February 26 with 38 people killed. While the victims were buried in a mass grave and the injured yet to recover, Ungwan Barde village was attacked again on Sunday 10th March; 17 people were killed and dozens of houses burnt.
“The next day, while we were still searching for more bodies, Inkirimi and Dogonnoma villages in Maro were attacked; 52 people were killed and dozens injured. The smoke had barely settled when an attack was launched in the evening at Ungwan Gora (Labi village) with dozens injured and 43 houses burnt. Thousands of households have been displaced now and are moving from one village to the other in search of safety and refuge.
“In all these, not a single person has been arrested, not even questioned. This is despite the fact that all the attacks took place either in the morning or in the evening – in full glare of everyone. The terrorists come in their hundreds, take time to kill and then leave without anyone being caught or apprehended by the security.”