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Southern Kaduna: 518 Killed, 18 Villages Razed In 6yrs




The people of Southern Kaduna, under the aegis of Atyap Community Development Association, ACDA, have, again, expressed deep worry over the persistent attacks and killings in Atyapland in the Zangon Kataff Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

They also faulted the recent security report presented by the sector commander of Operation Safe Haven in the area.

Speaking at a briefing in Samaru Kataf, yesterday, after a peaceful protest, the President of ACDA, Samuel Achi, said the persistent attacks on his people had led to the death of many kinsmen and women, while even children were not spared by the suspected killer herdsmen.

He said: “It is with regret that we are addressing Nigerians and the international community at large, on the persistent and recurring attacks and killings in some communities of Atyapland in Zangon Kataf Local Government of Kaduna State by suspected armed Fulani herdsmen, who have enjoyed decades of peaceful coexistence with our communities but have now set out on a mission to displace these communities and take over our lands.

“It is regrettable to state for the records that defenceless communities in Atyapland have been suffering selective killings since 2017, before the sustained attacks by suspected armed Fulani herdsmen in 2020.

”Recently, Atyapland has dominated the headlines for the wrong reasons, following renewed attacks in Ungwan Wakili, Lagson, Atakjei and Runji, where 70 people have been killed, including a five-year-old boy, who was beheaded.

”At the last count, 20 villages have been ransacked, 18 villages burnt down, while 518 people have been killed, with thousands of victims who have taken refuge across many communities from 2017 till date.
“The military personnel drafted to provide security in the area are not helping matters. Instead of performing their primary assignment of securing the lives and property of the communities, they are selective by taking sides with the suspected herdsmen.

”This is evident in the 2023 first quarter security report presented to the Kaduna State government by the Sector Commander, Operation Safe Haven in Southern Kaduna, Brigadier General Timothy Opurum, on the recent killings in Atyap land.

“In his doctored submission, the sector commander gave an unbalanced, lopsided report and was very economical with facts which prompted the governor to note with concern the continued failure of the traditional and community leaders in Zangon Kataf chiefdom to prevent the mayhem and resort to self-help by recalcitrant youths.

“For the avoidance of doubt and to put things in proper perspectives, we hereby straighten the records on some of the issues he raised.

”The Sector Commander, Brig Gen. Opurum, deliberately failed, neglected and refused to highlight the contributions of the traditional council in Atyap land towards maintaining peace in the chiefdom, which facts are known to him and other security agencies in the area.

”The report did not convey the positive role played so far by the traditional council and other community leaders in checkmating the conflicts.”

“These contributions include visiting all homes of victims of attacks and killings in Atyap land, sponsoring conferences, workshops on peaceful co-existence for Atyap, Hausa and Fulani youth, women and security operatives in Atyap land with the Kaduna State Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, international and national peace advocates like Dr Salim Musa, Barr. Pricilla Ankut to mention but a few, is in full attendance.

”Others include co-operation with Kaduna State Peace Commission on several peace advocacy missions to Atyap, Hausa and Fulani youth and women groups in Atyap land, ensuring the permanent removal of all roadblocks by youth in Atyap land; the setting up and funding of the Atyap Chiefdom Peace, Security and Partnership Committee made up of Atyap, Hausa and Fulani youth and women; provision of logistic and human support to operatives of Operation Safe Havens, Police and State Security Service etc.

“In fact, the governor of Kaduna State had on many occasions, commended the Agwatyap for these bold and practical actions towards maintaining peace in Atyap land. We were taken aback when we heard his comment after the sector commander’s report.

“Brig. Gen. Opurum deliberately refused to see and state the known facts that the influx of many dangerous lawless suspected Fulani terrorists into Zangon Kataf Urban Hausa settlement and their attendant criminal activities in the last three years is responsible for the brutal attacks on mostly innocent and defenceless women and children in Atyap villages.

“It is a known fact among security agencies in our Atyap land that most attacks on our villages and people are planned and coordinated by these suspected Fulani terrorists in Zangon Kataf Urban Hausa settlement.”

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NIS Will Focus More On Passport Insurance, Staff Welfare – New Ag. CG



The newly appointed Acting Comptroller General, Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Caroline Adepoju, has promised to promote staff welfare and passport insurance.

Adepoju, therefore, directed all passport offices nationwide to take necessary steps to ensure no Nigerian is subjected to unnecessary delays or substandard treatment in the course of applying for passports.

This was contained in a statement issued by the Service Public Relations Officer (SPRO), Comptroller of Immigration, Mr. Tony Akuneme, in Abuja, yesterday.

The Acting CG read the riot act, when she addressed top management of the NIS minutes after taking over from Alhaji Isah Jere, her immediate predecessor.

Adepoju affirmed that she would focus majorly on passport issues and staff welfare as those two aspects contribute mostly to the complaints of Nigerians and NIS personnel.

She announced that a stakeholders meeting would be convened in the next few days to x-ray the real issues in passport process and proffer far-reaching solutions.

This, she said, would include opening more front offices in the Lagos area, where the bulk of complaints emanate from.

Adepoju equally said she would adopt a bottom-top approach in tackling officers’ welfare.

“We will start by meeting all cadres of staff to hear their genuine needs, in a bid to hit the ground running with a blue print that will be based on an all inclusive needs assessment,” she said.

She appreciated the immediate past Comptroller General for making positive impact on the service during his tenure and asked God to guide him in his future endeavours.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Adepoju had served in various locations during her career in the NIS.

Until her appointment, she was the Deputy Comptroller General in charge of Finance.

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Tinubu Reinstates Sanity As DSS, EFCC Squabble Over Property In Lagos




A protracted conflict between Department of State Services (DSS) and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over a building at No. 15 Awolowo Road, Ikoyi, Lagos, appeared to have taken a dirty twist, yesterday.

The incident, however, earned a place in the archive of the new administration as one of the first interventions by President Bola Tinubu, who was sworn in barely 24 hours earlier.

Operatives of the DSS had barricaded entrance to the EFCC’s office, located at the said building, leading the anti-graft agency to issue a protest statement.

Meanwhile, the DSS issued a counter statement, denying it barricaded the premises, and claiming it was “only occupying its own” facility.

According to a statement released by presidential spokesman, Tunde Rahman, Tinubu “directed DSS to immediately vacate the office of the EFCC in Ikoyi, Lagos,” adding, “if there were issues between the two important agencies of government, they would be resolved amicably.”

EFCC’s spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren, described the incident as bizarre, given that both agencies had shared the controversial facility for decades.

The statement reads: “Operatives of the Lagos Command of the EFCC arrived at their office on No. 15 Awolowo Road, Ikoyi, this morning, May 30, 2023, to be denied entry by agents of the DSS, who had barricaded the entrance with armoured personnel carriers.

“This development is strange to the Commission, given that we have cohabited with the DSS in that facility for 20 years without incident.

“By denying operatives access to their offices, the Commission’s operations at its largest hub, with over 500 personnel, hundreds of exhibits, and many suspects in detention have been disrupted.

Cases scheduled for court hearing today have been aborted, while many suspects who had been invited for questioning are left unattended.

“Even more alarming is that suspects in detention are left without care, with grave implications for their rights as inmates. All of these have wider implications for the nation’s fight against economic and financial crimes.

“The siege is inconsistent with the synergy expected of agencies working for the same government and nation, especially when there are ongoing discussions on the matter.”

DSS spokesman, Peter Afunanya, however, said: “It is not correct that the DSS barricaded EFCC from entering its office. No. It is not true. The Service is only occupying its own facility where it is carrying out its official and statutory responsibility.

“By the way, there is no controversy over No 15 Awolowo Road, as being insinuated by the media. Did the EFCC tell you it is contesting ownership of the building? I will be surprised if it is contesting the ownership.

“Awolowo Road was NSO headquarters. SSS/DSS started from there. It is a common knowledge. It is a historical fact. Check it out.

“There is no rivalry between the Service and the EFCC over and about anything. Please, do not create any imaginary one. They are great partners working for the good of the nation. Dismiss any falsehood of a fight.”


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Three Killed While Travelling To Attend Inauguration Of New Ebonyi Governor, Nwifuru




The victims who hailed, from Izzi Local Government Area, the home town of the new governor, Francis Nwifuru, were said to have died in a ghastly motor accident on their way to Abakaliki.

Three persons travelling to attend Monday’s swearing-in ceremony in Abakaliki, the Ebonyi State capital, Southeast Nigeria, have reportedly been killed.

The victims who hailed, from Izzi Local Government Area, the home town of the new governor, Francis Nwifuru, were said to have died in a ghastly motor accident on their way to Abakaliki.

Although the details of the accident were still sketchy, reports claimed many others also sustained varying degrees of injury.

According to one report, the vehicle carrying the victims had gone to Izzi to pick up villagers. Unfortunately, while they were travelling from the local government area to Abakaliki, one of the car tyres was deflated. 

Those injured in the accident have reportedly been moved to the Ebonyi Federal Teaching Hospital in Abakaliki.

The swearing-in ceremony in the state, like it is happening across the country today (Monday), is holding at the Pa Ngele Oruta Township Stadium, Abakaliki.

Meanwhile, efforts made by SaharaReporters to speak with the State Police Public Relations Officer SP, Onome Onovwakpoyeya, were unsuccessful as she didn’t answer her calls.

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