ABUJA – A spokesman of the Southern Kaduna Peoples Union (SOKAPU), Luka Binniyat, has said bandits and terrorists have occupied 108 communites in Southern Kaduna.
He stated that outlaws have unofficially declared war on Nigeria, adding that there has never been a time in the history of the country when (apart from top government officials who are protected round the clock by security personnel), everyone has become so vulnerable.
The spokesman of SOKAPU, a body made up of all the 67 ethnic nationalities of Kaduna State in 12 of the 23 Local Government Areas of the state said Nigeria has largely been captured by violent criminals, adding that the “so-called ‘bandits who are essentially of the Fulani stock, have captured and are occupying territories larger than some states in Nigeria. The essence of having a government in Nigeria has been defeated. Like I said, the level of violent crimes in Nigeria is unprecedented.
”There was no time that the blood of the innocent has been so wantonly bled since the Nigerian civil war like today. In some parts of Southern Kaduna, children have stopped going to school for upwards of four years today because the communities have moved out after several deadly attacks and kidnapping,” he said.
According to him, Southern Kaduna is dotted with mass graves and in 2020, SOKAPU made a rough estimate of N1 billion as ransom paid to kidnappers that the surviving victims all identified as Fulani armed men. He said there is no time in Kaduna State that kidnappers are not holding 200 people hostages round the clock since this year.
“As of now, 108 communities whose land size can make several LGAs in some states have been captured and are occupied by these terrorists. No sensible Nigerian, who has been following this macabre plot, will not agree that there are clear agenda against the rest of the country. There is a Fulanisation agenda promoted by the powers that be. I was in Zuru Emirate recently on a working tour of communities that were affected by banditry.
“Some of the affected villages are Muslims communities. Local community leaders told me that the Fulani were out to chase them out of their ancestral homelands after rustling their livestock and burning down their food storage. They revealed horrifying pictures of helicopters dropping arms and supplies to locations of bandits. The bandits are essentially Fulani. They have already captured some villages and are occupying them now. In Niger State, the story is the same.
“In Kaduna State, especially in Southern Kaduna, not less than 108 communities have been captured by armed herdsmen, some dating back three years. The aggressive drive for lands by armed herdsmen became severe after most states refused to cede large swaths of lands to Fulani to be used as ‘Cattle Colony’ and later as ‘Ruga Settlement’ and then ‘Grazing Reserves.’
“The most vulnerable parts of Nigeria are areas of the Middle Belt with small ethnic groups and have expansive fertile lands. They do not have people in the top echelon of governance at home and at the federal levels. These are their targets. They tried that in Benue State. Governor Samuel Ortom chased them out. In Plateau State, scores of communities of the Berom ethnic group are under the forceful occupation of armed herdsmen. In Niger State, the Gbagyi, Kamukus and Achipawa are the owners of the lands captured by the bandits. None of their people are in power.
“It is the same in Kebbi State. The Dakakari, who are the majority in Zuru Emirate but are not in power, are the part of the state under siege by the bandits. Zuru Emirate, which is in Southern Kebbi state is considered as part of the Middle Belt. Come to Kaduna State, where Southern Kaduna has suffered untold persecution under the present government, it is the lands of the oppressed that the bandits have captured,” he said.
Binniyat stated that there are several other areas in the Middle Belt under the occupation of gunmen that have not been reported, adding that the common thing about the issue is that there is no effort whatsoever to chase them out, emphasising that there is an agenda to chase out vulnerable ethnic groups of the Middle Belt and replace them with Fulani demography.
Story adapted from New Telegraph