Southern Kaduna People’s Union (SOKAPU) has alleged that men of Operation Safe Haven, the security outfit keeping the peace in Southern Kaduna and Plateau State, have killed two of their youths.
SOKAPU which identified the killed youths as Emmanuel Nuhu, a 200 level student of Kaduna State College of Education, Gidan Waya and Tina Julius, a mother of four, said they were killed last Sunday during a peaceful protest at Fadan Karshi, Sanga Local Government Area of Kaduna State
The Union said it reached out to the leadership of the military outfit on the alleged killings, and they claimed that the protesting youths were armed, and shot at their men first.
In a statement issued by its spokesman Luka binniyat, SOKAPU said Nuhu, 20, and Julius, 34, a mother of four, were buried after a grim funeral service at the 1st ECWA Church, Fadan Karshi.
“The two were shot dead last Sunday (11th October, 2020 by armed personnel of Operation Safe Haven (OpSH) during a peaceful demonstration stage by the youths of the town against an unofficial curfew imposed over the town by OpSH made up of the military and paramilitary personnel since June this year,” the statement said.
“Our findings showed that the curfew was enforced with severe brutality that spared not even elderly and respectable members of the small town who found themselves outside during the 6pm-6am curfew hours. Yet, there had been no case of any breach of public peace in Fadan Karshi for years now.
“Fadan Karshi, a busy junction town with high commercial activities has been greatly affected by the three and half months curfew and some residents have had to leave the town out of frustration and fear.
“It was based on the negative consequences of the over three months curfew that youths of the town staged a peaceful protest to the palace of the District Head of Fadan Karshi, Very Reverend (Dr.) Joel Galadima (retired), last Sunday afternoon, calling on him to appeal to Operation Safe Heaven stationed in the area to lift the curfew.
“In the process, armed members of Operation Safe Haven appeared at the scene.
“A soldier (who residents say is notorious for his brutality and can identify him any time) sighted Emmanuel Nuhu, cocked his gun and fired at the unarmed youth. Tina Julius, on seeing that her cousin was shot, started screaming hysterically. This seemed to have irritated another armed OpSH personnel (a mobile police man) who also cocked his gun and shot the mother of four children.”
SOKAPU said they appreciate the work OpSH is doing in the area, but want their erring officials reined in.
They also want rights institutions to take up the case of the two dead persons.
know how she got shot. But when the incident was getting ugly, he ordered his men out, according to him.
“He later ensured that the road blocks were cleared for traffic to flow, he said.
“SOKAPU wants to make it unequivocally clear that we appreciate and acknowledge the good and risky work that Officers and Men of OpSH under the command of Major General Chukwu Emeka are doing to secure Southern Kaduna. And we have always mobilised for its support from all our communities. But he must rein on his troops to stop the use of crude and brute force on our already traumatized communities.
“For emphasis, we condemned in very strong terms the abuse of power and deployment of cruelty on harmless civilians.
“The killings of Emmanuel Nuhu and Tina Julius must not be swept under the carpet. We call on the Minister of Defense, Chief of Defense Staff, the Chief of Army Staff and all relevant government authorities to immediately launch an investigation into the killings of these two young Nigerian citizens. The process and findings should be made public.
“We call for the immediate lifting of the illegal curfew foisted Fadan Karshi.
“We are also calling on the Nigeria Human Rights Commission, Amnesty International, Civil Liberty Organization all Human Rights groups and all men and women of goodwill to show interest in this case. We insist on #Justice4Nuhu&Tina,” SOKAPU said.