North West insecurity persists, 35 persons killed in Kaduna, Katsina

A TOTAL of 35 persons were killed in separate attacks in Kaduna and Katsina States on Monday as the insecurity situation in some parts of the North West region of Nigeria persists.

In Kaduna, the State’s Police Public Relations Officer, Yakubu Sabo, told journalists that 21 people have been confirmed killed by unknown gunmen in two communities — Banono and Ungwan Aku — located in Kajuru local government area. Earlier reports had put the number of dead at 20.

Sabo also said three persons were injured, ten houses were set ablaze and 50 cows rustled in the attack. He said that on getting information about the attack, the police immediately mobilised to the communities and with the help of local vigilante groups, repelled the attack and evacuated both the dead and injured to the hospital.

According to him, efforts are on to apprehend fleeing members of the criminal gang, while more policemen had been deployed to the areas to boost security.

In Katsina State, 14 people were killed after members of a local vigilante group carried out an offensive on a suspected bandits hideout in Samiyar Jino village, Kankara local government area of the state.

Police said the vigilante group, also known as ‘Yansaki’, carried out the attack regardless of a warning not to do so.

“According to the reports received by the command, the incident started when members of the vigilante group decided to launch an attack on the bandits in their hideout (forest) killing seven of them and in the fierce battle, the bandits also killed seven of the vigilante members. Yansakai (volunteers) who went into the forest to fight the bandits refused to heed the police advice,” Gambo Isah, the spokesman of the Katsina State Police Command, told journalists

The North West States of Zamfara, Katsina and Kaduna have witnessed increased insecurity in recent times, as Kidnapping, cattle rustling and banditry are rife in parts of the states.

On March 20, hundreds of citizens from Southern Kaduna embarked on a peaceful protest in Abuja demanding action from the federal government over the incessant killings in their communities.

Similarly, on Saturday, April 6, concerned citizens in Abuja also marched from the Unity Fountain to the Aso Rock Presidential Villa to demand better security in Zamfara State.

Following the protest, the federal government announced a ban on mining activities in Zamfara State where it is believed that the existence of gold mines in parts of the state’s hinterlands could be responsible for the violence.
Like Zamfara, some parts of Kaduna State also − Binin Gwari to be precise − has many illegal mining sites. There have been several reports of violence in the area in relation to the illegal mining activities.

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