A PRESS RELEASE BY
SAMARU KATAF COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION (SACODA)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: JANUARY 24, 2017
The Incident of Violence in Samaru Kataf of January 17, 2017
On January 14, 2017 the District Head of Ungwan Gaiya and Village Heads of Tagama and Samaru Kataf 1, woke up to find letters placed at their residences. The letters were dated January 10, 2017 and indicated it was from Kungiyan Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders of Nigeria, Kaduna State Chapter (MACBAN). The letter was written in Hausa language and summarily stated that they were coming to attack Ungwan Gaiya District and Mabushi Kataf. They gave a three day notice. Adequate steps were taken to notify the appropriate authorities, which include the Nigeria Police Force of Zonkwa Division and Kafanchan Area Command respectively, of this development. The community also served the authorities with photocopies of the MACBAN letter. On Tuesday January 17, 2017 at about 8:14 PM gunmen entered the Samaru Kataf market and shot at a group of people. Eight persons were affected. Three died (namely Constant Bulus Dankat, Victor Daniel Bobai, Samuel Dariya) on the spot while five others (Aminu Basaki, Jesse Idzi, Samuel Waje Kude, Gabriel Ayok and Christopher Yakubu) sustained injuries of varying degrees. The deceased persons have since been buried and the injured persons are receiving treatment.
Samaru Kataf community believes that this attack was carried out following the threat letter issued by MACBAN Kaduna State Chapter in their letter to the District and Village Heads. What we cannot understand was the absence of an immediate response from the police unit stationed about a hundred metres away by the Samaru Kataf roundabout. The police did not respond to this attack until after about an hour.
The Purported Attack on the Emir of Jema’a
As a fall out of this incident, on January 19, 2017 Daily Trust Online newspaper carried a story written by its reporters, Ahmed Ali and Christiana T. Alabi, that the Emir of Jema’a, Alhaji Muhammadu Isa Muhammadu II was attacked by armed youth in Samaru Kataf on the night of Tuesday January 17, 2017 at about 8:14 PM.
Samaru Kataf Community Development Association has investigated and confirmed that this story as was narrated by Daily Trust, Leadership Newspaper of January 20, 2017 and the Nation Online of January 20, 2017 is not true. Our investigation reveals that there was never an attack on the Emir of Jema’a or his representative. The Emir’s convoy arrived at the scene a few minutes after the attack at the Samaru Kataf market. Nobody would have been carrying arms at that time because of the confusion that ensued. The youth on seeing the convoy with the klaxon lights on the lead car asked the drivers to go back because of the uncertainty ahead. An attack would have had different consequences. Where was the police unit that is stationed at the Samaru Kataf roundabout when the Emir’s convoy passed their check point and arrived at the scene of the purported attack? Our youth actually helped the Emir’s convoy to navigate back in order to avoid potential mob action not even knowing whose convoy it was until later. SACODA is aware that the Security Committee of Zangon Kataf LGA met and their findings confirmed that the Emir of Jema’a was never attacked. The Samaru Kataf, and indeed the Atyap community, have strong respect for our Agwatyap and other traditional leaders and thus would never condone any untoward behaviour against an eminent person as the Emir.
Our Call TO Government
Samaru Kataf Community Development Association (SACODA) appeals to government at all levels to be decisive in handling and forestalling the violent attacks in Samaru Kataf and Southern Kaduna at large. It is strategic to building lasting peace to explore all possible avenues and encourage the participation of all stakeholders in seeking sustained solutions to the remote and immediate causes of conflict and violence in the region. Government should spare nothing to enhance the positive integration of all ethnicities and religions. It is also important to clear all biases and suspicions towards government, community and interest groups.
Call to Community
SACODA urges Samaru Kataf youth to refrain from acts of violence but be conscious of and maintain full responsibility for self defence. There are Fulanis and Hausas living amidst us who are still going about the pursuit of their livelihoods and other daily activities without any form of molestation.
In conclusion, we urge all, especially the media, traditional and religious leaders to authenticate facts before making statements that could further incite and divide us.
Patrick Y. Sidi