No fewer than 35 people have been reportedly killed and another 58 abducted after suspected bandits invaded 10 communities in Chikun and Birnin Gwari local government areas of Kaduna State.
The gunmen were said to have invaded the villages and carried out the attacks on January 6, and subsequently demanded the payment of N100 million ransom for the release of their victims.
The attacks had caused some residents to panic and flee their homes, taking refuge in government schools and other communities.
Speaking when Jonathan Asake, president of Southern Kaduna Peoples Union, SOKAPU, visited victims of the attack at aschool, one Habila Sarkin Noma, a clergyman, said the bandits had called to say “we must produce N100 million as ransom if we want to have them alive.”
He alleged that the suspects were herdsmen who have been attacking the villages persistently, and “would grace on our crops and threatened to kill us if we protest.”
“Sometimes when they attack and take captives, we will manage and pay a ransom. Even after paying, sometimes they kill the victims,” Habila said.
“But the attacks that took place on the 6th January 2020, was the worst, they killed about 35 people and kidnapped a total of 58 people in 10 villages.”
He listed the affected villages to include Badna, Zankoro, Hayin Damisa, Unguwan Badole, Badimi, Kuderi and Unguwan Doma in Chukun LGA while others include Rumana Gbagyi, Rumana Hausa and Malomo in Birnin Gwari LGA.
According to him, the invaders came in hundreds and were well armed.
Addressing journalists during the visit, Asake asked the government and international community to come to the aid of the victims.
“As you can see from the way these people are, they are seriously traumatized and needed immediate assistance to be able to fold on.
“We have been told that the suspected bandits destroyed all their farm products and also destroyed their houses leaving them with nothing to call their own.
“Here at Ungwar Beji, there are about 200 of them with no food, beds or clothes while we are also been told that about 8,000 of them have converged at Buruku with nothing with them.
“Worst of all, most of the children are sick. This calls for concern on all people of good will to come to their aid in any kind in order to give them hope of survival before steps could be taken on the area of their education.”
The Cable could not independently verify details of the attack and casualties as calls placed to Yakubu Sabo, spokesman of the Kaduna state police command, were not answered.