Breaking News

INSECURITY: Is Kaduna Under Siege? By Abdull-Azeez Ahmed Kadir

Kaduna state Gov, Nasir el-Rufa'i

"Kaduna is the centre of Nigeria. It is more central than the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. Kaduna is the gateway State to any geopolitical zone in Nigeria." Kadir

Protection of lives and property is the prime and number one responsibility of any responsible government. Failure to ensure this, is not just a failure on the part of the government. It is what it is; non existence of government. Or in our climes, absence of governance.

Nigeria runs a federal system with three tiers of government: federal, state and local. As it stands, the states have succeeded in suffocating the local governments to death. It is an asphyxiation that is avoidable, but which the governors, irrespective of political parties across the whole nation collectively do for their selfish interests. 

Kaduna is the centre of Nigeria. It is more central than the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. Kaduna is the gateway State to any geopolitical zone in Nigeria. 

It was then Major Abubakar Dangiwa Umar (now retired Colonel) as the Military Administrator of Kaduna that said if Kaduna sneezes, the whole nation catches cold.

In the last one month, the state has been in the news for the wrong reasons. 

First, the state governor, elected to govern the state, elect to be the gadfly of the All Progressive Congres APC struggling to decide its leadership. This he did to the point of dropping the President's name albeit falsely. Some called it failed coup.

Imagine if the Governor had invested such energy in Abuja from the Loius Edet House, to the Defense Headquarters, Army, Navy, Air Force and other paramilitary forces in ensuring the security of lives and property of his state. 

But no. The first law for typical Nigerian politician is self preservation. Any other thing is secondary. This much we saw in the preceding and current week.

While Kaura Local Government burns, the governor fiddles in Abuja. To save face, it resorted to 24 hour curfew. To say the same governor had criticized curfew imposition by one of his predecessors in office as booting citizens fundamental rights. 

In that Kaura council attacks,  scores of lives were lost and unquantifiable property destroyed including farm produces. 

Ironically, it is rather sad that the pogrom in the southern parts, which is not different from what is happening in Giwa and Igabi is always given an ethnoreligious colouration and interpretation by clanish and conflict entrepreneurs. 

Days after, Giwa Local Government Area came under attacks. At the last count, over 50 humans were mowed down in cold blood. For three consecutive days, the terrorists had a field day, fiesting on their victims.

While this last, the governor and the state governance structure had their heads and hearts in Abuja for their party convention.

In other climes, the governor would have cut short whatever engagement he was having to empathise with his people. But no, the people were left to their fate.

A day or two after, the bandits were so embolden to have made an attempt to infiltrate the Kaduna International Airport. Thanks to the vigilance of the Asman Air Pilot, the story would not have been far different from the Abuja-Kaduna bound train tragedy. 

I watched the Garrison Commander of 1 Division Nigerian Army, Kaduna attempt a reconnaissance on the airport sad realitywith avyeam of journalists. According to him, the terrorists did not infiltrate the airport, the man killed was not a staff of NAMA as claimed, but was a farmer on his farm, but employed by the airport to guard a meteorological facility. He pointed at the meteorological facility not far from where he stood.

He said two motorcycles belonging to the terrorists were recovered and six of them taken out.

You can interpret the above. Terrorists who gain access to where a meteorological facility is located in airport, killed the man employed to guard the facility, terrorists sighted by a pilots in the cockpit of aircraft on a tarmac didn't gain access to the airport?

And to say that axis is notorious for terrorists activities is stating the obvious. Ironically, that axis host the 1 Division Nigerian Army Headquarters, Command and Staff College, Nigerian Air Force Traning Command, the Department of State Services DSS training school, the Airport, Nigerian Defence Academy NDA, Nigerian Army School of Engineering in Rigachukwu. 

For Rigachukwu, the kidnapping for ransom is a weekly sad occurrence. Many have abandoned their personal homes they built for the fear of the marauding terrorists and moved to the city centre and rent apartments to pay through their noses. 

The mass exodus of citizens from their personal houses in the suburbs for the fear of these terrorists, is resulting in skyrocketing rents in the city centre.

But like some would say, they would rather pay skyrocketing rents, be safe and alive than pay ransom of hundreds of thousands or millions and not be sure of ones safety.

Just Sunday night, a staff of Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company KRPC identified as Engr Husseini along his wife and two others was abducted in his house at Hayin Danmani in Igabi Local Government Area. That community shares boundary with Sir Kashim Ibrahim House; Kaduna Government House and a stone throw away from where the governor and his family are resident.

The gunmen in their numbers were said to have come on Motorcycles around 2:30am, spent time trying to infiltrate the house, banging the gate while sporadically shooting into the air.

All efforts through screaming and call for help by Engineer Husseini and his family yielded no result. The lone man who summoned the courage and made attempts, got shot in the leg by the terrorists and taken away. The terrorists abandoned their motorcycles and fled into tin air inside the hostage's car.

Barely 24 hours after that sad incident, the Abuja-Kaduna train occured. 

Should we be surprised? Definitely no. After the last attempt to blow the train,  what measures were put in place to avert what happened on Monday? If any measures were put in place, they more than failed.

The sad incident of yesterday doesn't required any IF. Infact, it is WHEN. And yesterday Monday 28 March, 2022 answered that when.

Sadly, after the Airport incident which was kore a dress rehearsal, those concerned to protect lives and property went to sleep. 

If for nothing, intelligence should have shown that considering the large number of those who went to Abuja for the APC Convention, after the Airport incident, the train would be a soft target. But do we even act on intelligence in this nation. 

For most attacks and abduction in Kaduna, there is always intelligence. But considering the dearth of Operation Yaki, Divisional Police Commands without serviceable vehicles, resources to even fuel such, we are all sitting ducks. 

Blame the Police as you like, their is little or nothing they can do. Except you want them to mortgage their lives. They are, after all, humans like you and I.

Live in denial as much as you like, try to control the narrative to suit your ego, emasculate those who will tell the truth, threaten even state actors to silence, this would not solve the problem. 

We must face the reality and do the needful. No one, however highly placed is safe as long as we are not safe.

Like Shakespeare says; he who steps his safety in blood, would have but a bloody safety. Is Kaduna under siege?

Abdull-Azeez Ahmed Kadir, 

No comments

Drop Comment