“We do not sleep with our eyes closed; we take a nap, then wake up and keep watch… we are just depending on the grace of God.”
These are the words of a villager from the Maro Ward of Kajuru Local Government Area (LGA) in the southern part of Nigeria’s Kaduna state. In the absence of effective security or government assistance, this is what targeted communities across the state have been forced into: spending their days and nights on alert patrolling, living in fear of terrorists who destroy their crops, take their lives, and abduct hundreds, if not thousands, for ransom.
Continue reading ““We do not sleep with our eyes closed” – how long will the international community fail the people of southern Kaduna?“ →
Kaduna has been an epicentre of violence and banditry for several years now, with attacks on non-Muslim farming communities in the south increasing exponentially with the advent of the current administration amid a general deterioration in security.
5 June brought with it familiar agony for four villages in southern Kaduna state, Nigeria. According to local reports, attackers of Fulani ethnicity are said to have descended on the villages of Dogon Noma, Maikori, Ungwan Gamu and Ungwan Sarki at around noon, with violence continuing for approximately six hours.
In consistency with previous reports of militia attacks in the region, the assailants were reportedly grouped three to a motorcycle, with one man to drive, and two others to shoot to the right and left respectively.
At least 32 people were killed across the four villages, while an unknown number remain missing following the latest attack to specifically target the Adara people, who have suffered violence at the hands of Fulani assailants for several years now.
Continue reading “A helicopter’s alleged involvement in Kaduna terrorist attacks could mean one of two things” →
On 20 October 2020 Nigerian security forces at the Lekki Toll Gate in Lagos opened fire on unarmed and peaceful demonstrators who had gathered to protest the notorious police unit, the Special Armed Robbery Squad (SARS) and call for good governance. The soldiers opened fire just as the protestors finished singing the national anthem. When they withdrew, the police arrived and also opened fire.
Estimates of those killed are variable, ranging from nine to over 70. The real number could be higher still, with video footage subsequently emerging which appeared to confirm allegations by survivors that the military had evacuated bodies from the scene in armoured vehicles, as had occurred in 2015 when soldiers attacked Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) facilities in Zaria, Kaduna state, and more recently, during an armed raid on the home of a Yoruba activist in Ibadan.
Prior to attacking, engineers had arrived at the toll gate earlier that afternoon and removed and disabled the CCTV. Just before the attack began, the lights in the area were switched off.
The Nigerian army, which was ostensibly enforcing a curfew announced by the Lagos state government just hours before the attack, initially attempted to deny responsibility, and even claimed soldiers were not in the area, despite footage from mobile phones proving otherwise. The Governor of Lagos also attempted to distance himself from responsibility for the incident, visiting some of the wounded in hospital. However, he later claimed in a television address that there had been no casualties, enraging survivors, families of victims, and all who had followed livestreaming of the massacre on social media. Regardless of the number of casualties, these deaths amount to cynically executed extrajudicial killings of young people merely for demanding good governance and rule of law.
Continue reading “Long Read: One year since the Lekki Toll Gate massacre, Nigeria continues its slide into failed statehood” →