The Kaduna State government says no fewer than 387 people have been killed in Zangon Kataf and Kauru Local Government Areas (LGAs) of the state in the last two years.
The Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs in Kaduna, Samuel Aruwan, who disclosed this on Wednesday said about 100 other people sustained various degrees of injury during the period.
He blamed the killings on attacks and counter-attacks between the Fulani community and Atyap natives in the two LGAs.
Aruwan made the remarks at a peace-building meeting between leaders of the two warring communities held at the palace of the paramount ruler of Atyap Chiefdom, Dominic Yahaya.
“We are here on behalf of the governor following the renewed killings in Kauru and Zangon Kataf Local Government Areas. It is a big setback but we will not relent,” he said.
“For instance in 2020, 114 citizens were killed in Zangon Kataf and 28 in Kauru, and in 2021, 186 were killed in Zangon Kataf and 59 in Kauru, and if you put the figures together, we lost 387 people in these two councils.
“In 2021, 100 citizens incurred gunshot injuries in the two councils, 77 in Zangon Kataf and 23 in Kauru. This is aside houses and settlements burnt, farms destroyed, cattle killed, and the collapse of the rural economy affecting all the communities.”
The meeting followed the recent killing of a herder by gunmen in Zaman Chawai and another death from a fresh inter-ethnic communal clash in Bakin Kogi market – both in the Kauru.
According to security agencies, the youths from the Fulani and Atyap communities are largely responsible for the scale of attacks in the area, a situation which they say has made the speedy return of peace to the area impossible.
He reiterated his call to communities in Kauru and Zangon Kataf to avoid generalisations that keep complicating the security situation in the two councils.
“We are reiterating our appeal for recourse to the law and avoidance of generalisations. These killings and counter-killings are unjustifiable,” the commissioner stated.
“We must rise to the occasion and put a stop to all these challenges arising from the behavior of a few elements on all sides. Let us reason together and avert this needless bloodshed.”
The member of House of Reps representing Zangon Kataf/Jaba Federal Constituency, Amos Gwamna Magaji, in his remarks supported the appeal for recourse to the law, collective campaign, and peace in the locations.
In their separate remarks, Yahaya and the Chief of Chawai, Yahaya Mohammed, backed the calls for peace and pledged their commitment to supporting the security forces in their effort for sustainable peace and development in the areas.