Kaduna Crises: GOC 1Div Monitor Security Situation

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…youth turn vigilante to protect their communities from invaders

By: Kate Obi/Kaduna

The General Officer Commanding (GOC), 1 Division of the Nigerian Army, Major General Muhammad Mohammed on Monday, 22nd of October, 2018 tour Kaduna metropolis for security assessment situation of 24-hour curfew imposed by the State Governor, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai as violence broke out in some parts of the metropolis at about 4:00pm on Sunday 21st October, 2018 resulting in the burning of several houses, vehicles and killings.

The tour which started from Kawo New Extension to Anguwan Dosa, Badarawa, Malali, Anguwan Rimi, Narayi and Nnamdi Azikiwe Expressway, among other places where witnessed youths armed with knives, machetes, swords and sticks, mounted roadblocks on major roads to their communities.

Reportcircle correspondent who was among the journalists on the tour with GOC reported that the community residents turned vigilante groups by themselves to beef up security around their communities from enemies, invaders as well as miscreants as they do not trust the security agency with their lives.

Some of the youths who spoke in an interview said they cannot surrender the security of their communities to security agencies as there were likely to be fake security personnel who may infiltrate and cause harm to them.

This is as a result of the ugly story in Narayi during our visit as the youth leader, Mr. Emmanuel Godwin narrates the community ordeal, his word “early hours of Monday, gunmen posed as members of vigilante group killed three young men in our area when people were sleeping.

“The gunmen with a Hilux vehicle marked ‘JTF’ arrived the community at about 2:00 pm and abducted the young men who were letter killed.

“They came at about 2:00 am in a Hilux Van and they claimed they were vigilante members from Barnawa. We told them that Narayi is not their jurisdiction and they had no business coming to our community since we have our own vigilante group. As they were driving away, they picked three boys as if they were arresting them.

“Shortly after they left with the boys they shot and killed them and dumped the corpses by the roadside. The burial of the victims took place on Monday, amidst mass protest by the youths who blocked the major road leading to the community.

“It took the efforts of religious and community leaders to pacify the angry youths who blamed security personnel “for not doing enough to protect” them despite the curfew.

“So, we cannot surrender the security of our area to security agents because of our experience where fake security personnel go about killing people or some of the security personnel become partisan.

“We are only complimenting the security agencies” the youth leader said.

The General Officer Commanding (GOC), 1 Division of the Nigerian Army, Major General Muhammad Mohammed therefore expressed his gratitude for the co-operation and understanding between the media and the Nigerian Army during crises by reporting objectively for the unity and peace of the country.

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