…808 people killed, 16 churches, 1,422 houses burnt
…2 killed in Igbo-Fulani clash in Enugu
The leadership of the Catholic Church of Kafanchan in Kaduna State has given a chilling account of the mass killings going on in Southern Kaduna by Fulani herdsmen. Giving a statistics of the genocide, the catholic leaders said 808 people were killed during the most recent attacks that commenced on Christmas day and has continued till date.
This is coming as two people died in Enugu during a clash between Igbo and Fulani people over payment of fee in an Enugu abattoir.
A statement by the church in Kafanchan said the killings were carried out in 53 villages across four local government areas notably Kaura, Sanga, Jama’a and Kauru. It said 57 people were injured while farm produce estimated N5.5 billion were destroyed while 1, 422 houses and 16 churches were burnt during the attacks.
“The herdsmen and their ilk turned the towns into killing fields and killed mostly women, children and the elderly who couldn’t run for cover.
“The level of barbarity was such that pregnant women got their wombs blown out and massacred before their children. And these innocent children were not spared either.
“This level of viciousness was never witnessed even in the brutal tyranny and regime of Adolf Hitler. What is most intriguing is the level of sophistication of weapons likeAK 47, machine guns and many other deadly instruments of death which were freel used.
“The viciousness of these self styled Jihadists sends shivers into the spines of our traumatised people. In the Godogodo and Pasakori attacks for example, the military merely watched and supervised the burning of our homes. When the youths mobilised to repel the attackers, the soldiers deliberately blocked them from entering the town,” the statement signed by the Vicar General of the Diocese, Rev. Fr. Ibrahim Yakubu; Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Okolo, Chancellor, Rev. Fr. Aaron Tanko Rev. Fr. Williams Abba and President, Laity Council, Mr. Joseph Bayei (KSJ), said.
The church leaders further noted that “It didn’t take the government of el-Rufai time to figure out what to do to tackle armed robbery and cattle rustling in the Birnin Gwari area.
“Within the shortest possible time, soldiers were deployed and many of the cattle rustlers and bandits were either killed or arrested and cows in their hundreds were rescued.
“This is commendable and we are happy that the Fulanis in Birnin Gwari have been rescued from these bandits. If the government can deploy helicopters and soldiers to Birnin Gwari to help in tracking down the terrorists, why is the same government unwilling to deploy the same soldiers and helicopters to Southern Kaduna to help flush out the Fulani herdsmen terrorising indigenes of Southern Kaduna?”
They demanded the immediate release of detained Kaduna youths and vacation of houses occupied by Fulani herdsmen.
“We demand immediate release of Southern Kaduna youths and leaders unjustly detained by various security agencies for trumped up charges.
“Provision of relief materials to victims of the attacks in Southern Kaduna be made a priority.
“Compensation to all families that suffered losses of dear ones and property
“Communities overrun by Fulani herdsmen and now under occupation by same must be vacated and their owners returned to their homes and farmlands immediately”.
The Enugu incident occurred when a Fulani came to slaughter a cow in the abattoir and subsequently refused to pay the required fee leading to a fight prompting the Fulani named Ali to stab the Igbo, Ifeanyi, severally leading to his instant death. The situation led to the Igbo in the area to lynch Ali, who attempted to escape.
A statement from the Enugu State Police Command confirmed the incident.
“Two persons were confirmed dead yesterday in the course of a clash between an easterner and a northerner over an alleged misunderstanding that arose between them at Gariki Awkunanaw market.”