..As dead toll rises to 24, 4 still missing
By Achadu Gabriel, Kaduna
Atyap Community Development Association (ACDA) has decried constant attacked on people in the their communities saying the death tolls in the recent attacks and killings have risen from 11 to 24, as four others still missing.
The Association’s President Samuel T. Achie who disclosed this during a press conference Monday in Kaduna also alleged that the killers who are Fulani terrorists are shielded and protected by the military operatives deployed to the area.
Achie, in a chat also lamented that while five of dead victims were later found after long searching, eight others killed while in the bushes running for their lives in the night were later discovered in a thorough reach, as four more others are still missing.
According to him, the killers are even under the cover of military and allowed to move freely hitherto with their cattles and AK-47 hanging on their shoulders in Atyap community and environs, even after being declared as terrorists.
“It is with a heavy heart that I again have to address you today on the on going carnage, killings, maiming, destruction and displacement of communities being perpetrated on the Atyap land by terrorist forces.
“While we have remained resolute in pursuing the peace initiated by our paramount ruler, HRH Sir Dominic Yahaya Gambo and other sons and daughters of the land, the enemies of peace keep inflicting pains by invading our villages and killing our people at will and getting away with it.
“The unfortunate thing is that at any time there is a peace meeting with either government officials, representatives of Fulani organizations or the NGOs to try and advance the peace process, the next will be an attack on the land by the terrorists, who subsequently vanish without any trace “, the president said.
Achie also said “the ability of the attacking terrorists to disappear without trace appears surprising”, calling on the security forces to step up and show commitment to end the killings, to protect the lives and properties of the citizens.
The president said he had on several occasions reiterated the need for leaving together peacefully rather than fighting and killing “ourselves over ancestral heritage”, adding that the escalating violence against the Atyap communities continued to beat human imagination.
“With the deliberate perpetuation of violence against the Atyap Chiefdom and communities in Zangon Kataf Local Government area of Kaduna State, the lives of citizens have been reduced to nothing in the land, and the lives and properties of our people are being obliterated at will by those that feel they are protected and can do whatever they want with human lives and go free.
“After my last Press Release and update on the happenings in Atyap land on 17/07/2021, many lives and innumerable properties have been destroyed in villages like Abuyab, Mazaki, Mawakili, Takjei, Matache, Matagama, Gora Gan, Kurmin Masara and Atisa.
“On Sunday 30th January 2022, 11 people were brutally murdered by the terrorists, many were wounded, over 30 houses burnt and over 100 people displaced. Again, on Monday 31st January 2022, Atisa village in (Kurmin Masara) was attacked and 5 lives lost and 8 houses burnt too.
“Even in the presence of the security check points in Bakin Kogi and Ashaawuce both less than a kilometer from the scene, some people from the area are still missing and unaccounted for. This again has aggravated the humanitarian crisis in the land, thereby making life unbearable to the peace loving citizens of Atyap land.
“In several meetings and in particular during one of our visits at the invitation of His Excellency the Governor of Kaduna State, Mal. Nasiru El-Rufai, he publicly applauded the efforts of HRH the Agwatyap on the efforts to sustain the peace initiative and the high respect he had for the paramount ruler.
“Despite all this, His Royal Highness and the Atyap nation have been left alone to carry their cross for reasons best known to the government.
“In that same visit, Governor El-Rufai did give a deadline that by December 2021, if peace was not restored in Atyap land that he would withdraw all the security operatives.
“Given the obvious abandonment of the Atyap communities to their fate in the hands of violent and murderous terrorists armed to the teeth with sophisticated weapons, I sincerely feel it is time His Excellency call on the security apparatus for a review of strategy and possible changes where possible.
“I have said it before and I will say it again, that the entire Atyap nation has resolved that not an inch of our land will be taken for whatsoever purpose by the enemies of peace and good neighborliness in our community.
“From what is transpiring, it has become obvious that the terrorist Forces and their sponsors felt they can take over Atyap despite the presence of government security personnel under whose noses they now perpetuate their heinous crimes against our peace-loving people.
“Based on the foregoing, we want to make it categorically clear that the government should wake up to its responsibility of protecting its citizens’ lives and properties, which the state governor swore on oath to protect”, he also said.
Accordingly, he said Atyap people have cried enough, “buried our people enough and lost enough of houses and properties and we can’t take it anymore”, hence our resolved that “if peace is to be achieved, the Fulanis in Zango urban should be advised to leave as it’s strange that the Hausas and the Fulanis who have never stayed together as is the case now.
“All sons and daughters of Atyap land believed that the Fulanis there, are either recruit or serve as guides to the perpetrators of these killings in our land. Whenever there is an attack, and the attackers are pursued by our people, they ran into Zango for safety with the Hausas”, he said.
He therefore called on international community, urging that they “should know that what is going on in our land is a genocide perpetrated by enemies of the land for reasons best known to them.
“That the government should as a matter of urgency appraise the performance of all the military personnel as there seems to be a disconnect between what they are supposed to do and what they are doing.
“That all the good sons and daughters of Atyap land should from today know and appreciate that what is going on in the land is carefully planned and being executed to eliminate the Atyap race from the face of the earth.
“That the government they contributed to bring into power have failed us, hence the need to come together to work to salvage our land from the perpetrators of these heinous acts of dehumanization of lives and properties of our peace-loving citizens.
“That the Federal and Kaduna state government should compensate and resettle those who lost their love ones, those whose houses got burnt or destroyed and the farm lands that were destroyed by the terrorists to alleviate their suffering.
“That all lovers of peace and justice should come to the aid of the Atyap communities so that peace and peaceful co-existence are restored in our land”, he said.
He also called on all sons and daughters of the Atyap and well spirited individuals within and in the diaspora to continued to pray and contributed generously both financial and materially for the up keep of the displaced people in the IDP camp.