Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State on Sunday defended the killings in Southern Kaduna by Fulani militia. The governor speaking on Channels Television programme, Sunday Politics, monitored by National Daily from Lagos, noted that Southern Kaduna indigenes want to treat non-indigenes as second class citizens, The Kaduna governor attributed this to one of the reasons for the perennial killings in the zone.
Governor El-Rufai warned that all Nigerians are free to live anywhere in the country, declaring: “and I am ready to protect my people.”
Governor El-Rufai, being a Fulani, did not hide his sentiments in the Southern Kaduna killings, and perhaps, showing signs of bias in government’s ineffective interventions to contain the killings.
The Kaduna governor stated that Southern Kaduna elites have their own narratives about the crises. He blamed Southern Kaduna leaders for not showing enough cooperation to end the crisis in the area.
He, however, declared: “Southern Kaduna people want anyone who is not from there to be treated as second class citizens.
“Unless people are willing to embrace peace, no number of military troops can resolve the issues.”
Governor El-Rufai emphasized that bandits engaged in cattle rustling and kidnapping; adding: “they don’t discriminate between ethnic groups… it is an economic venture…”
The governor disclosed his resolve to assimilate all criticisms or abuses, saying: “I am the governor of the state; if I am not abused, who will be abused?”
Governor El Rufai, however, maintained: “We are not afraid of anybody no matter how high or low; we would deal with anyone; no one is above the law.
“I will like to see a situation where perpetrators of these crimes are sanctioned and even hanged.”
Governor El-Rufai explained that the crises in Kaduna is a mix of ethnoreligious reasons; noting that banditry has now been added to it.
He declared: “The Southern Kaduna crisis is far complicated than what we have in other parts of Nigeria.”