By Philip Yatai
Kaduna – Some youths on Saturday protested what they called “the unabated killings in the southern part of kaduna State”, a development they described as “very unfortunate” considering the presence of security personnel in the area.
Mr Nasiru Jagaba, the National Youth Leader, Middle Belt Forum, who led the protest along NNPC Junction, Kachia road, Kaduna, alleged a conspiracy in the ongoing killings.
Jagaba, the immidiate past Youth Leader, Southern Kaduna People’s Union, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the people were being killed even with the presence of security personnel deployed to maintain peace in the area.
He said: “We are here today to bring to public knowledge the ongoing killings in the southern part of Kaduna state.
“We want the public and the internal community to know the systematic attacks on southern Kaduna communities in spite of the curfew imposed in the area by the state government.
“There were series of attacks in recent times with huge a number of deaths being recorded, but up to now there has not been any arrest.
“Only the victims are being arrested instead of the attackers, who find their way into the area … and carry out their barbaric acts unchallenged.”
Jagaba advised the government to take decisive steps to stop the killings to prevent a situation that could lead to total break down of law and order.
He dismissed reports making the rounds about the killings being reprisal, alleging that the attackers were “mercenaries hired” to cause trouble in the area.
“The government had imposed curfew in the areas under attack, thereby preventing people from going to their farms and keeping them in their houses only for the attackers to return and continue killing people freely unchallenged.
“Currently our farms have become empty … while we were locked in our houses in the name of curfew. Where is the justice?,” he said.
NAN reports that the protest barely began when security personnel, led by the Divisional Police Officer, Sabon Tasha, Paul Timbushi swarmed the area to prevent the protesting youths from proceeding with the demonstration as planned.
The heavily armed security personnel, who arrived in no fewer than 15 vehicles, storm the area and began to confiscate placards from the protesters in a bid to stop the protest.
A NAN correspondent, who was at the scene of the protest, reports that three of the protesting youths were arrested, but were later released on the agreement that the protest would be discontinued once they were released.
It took several hours before the protesters were dispersed while the security officials remained on ground to ensure that the youth did not reconvene.
NAN attempted to get a response from the police, but a senior personnel, who did not want to be mentioned, said the security personnel were at the scene of the protest to ensure that there was no breakdown of law and order.