Governor Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai of Kaduna State has accused the media of sensationalisation the spate of killings in the country, insisting that the fact that one village or area is engulfed in crisis does not automatically translate into a breakdown of security in the country.
In an interview with the Hausa section of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) that was monitored by Forefront, the governor told his listeners that there was no cause for alarm on the killings as government was on top of the situation.
According to the governor, “It is the media that are sensationalizing the issue of killings that is insignificant. The media has so much portrayed the issue as having grown out of proportion and constituting threat to the security of the country.
“Nigeria is a big a country and we cannot justifiably assume that just because there is a breakdown of law and order in one village or area, we then conclude that the country is under security threat.
Since becoming governor, el-Rufai added, his administration has been engaged in tackling ethnic violence in Southern Kaduna and cattle rustling and kidnappings in Birnin Gwari area of the state. We have successfully tackled the problems of ethnic violence in Southern Kaduna.
“We are now engaged in confronting the problem of cattle rustling and kidnappings in the Birnin Gwari. Following the level killings that have trailed the criminal activities of these armed bandits, the crisis has taken a dimension similar to that of Boko Haram insurgency.
“I call on the Federal Government to deploy its army and air force to tackle these criminal elements involved in kidnappings and cattle rustling in the Birnin Gwari area,” the Kaduna State governor told the BBC.
El-Rufa’s interview is coming on the heels of repeated kidnappings and killing of no fewer than 100 persons in Birnin Gwari, including the kidnappings of no fewer than 130 persons by armed criminals.
Last week, the bloody killings returned as two persons, comprising a man and a woman, were killed by gunmen in Pasakori village near Gidan Waya in Jema’a Local Government Area of Kaduna state.
Worried by the spate of violence in the Birnin Gwari axis, the Chief Army Staff, General Yusuf Tukur Buratai, ordered a military deployment to flush out the armed bandits that are becoming daring in their reign of violence and bloodshed. A fortnight ago, Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Kpotun Idris, also visited Birnin Gwari to assess the security situation in the country.