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Siege to Kaduna worsens as state records 830 abductions, 343 Killed, 210 injured in 3 months

Anthony Iwuoma

Hundreds of people have fallen victim to rising insecurity in Kaduna, as the state has reeled out grisly statistics.

According to the state Commissioner of Internal Security and Home Affairs, Samuel Aruwan, who released the figures on Wednesday, 343 persons died due to banditry and other violent attacks while 830 people were kidnapped in the state from July to September 2021.

Aruwan, while presenting the third quarter of 2021 Security report to Governor Nasir el-Rufai, added that 69 bandits were also killed by security agencies during the same period.
He added that 210 citizens were injured across the state, while 10 victims were raped, while 101 persons were rescued by troops during patrols and operations.

The Commissioner said 1018 animals were rustled, while there were 77 reports received, relating to the destruction of farms across the state within the period.

According to him, the actual figure could be higher taking unreported cases into account, adding that such destruction of crops had exacerbated tensions in frontline LGAs, many times leading to violence.

He disclosed that the main sources of revenue for bandits include among others ransoms for kidnapped hostages, profit from the gun-running arms trade, leasing of weapons to other criminal groups, proceeds from joint operations with other criminal groups, protection levies imposed on farming communities and individuals.

Aruwan said the bandits purchase commercial motorcycles and vehicles for informants who remit proceeds to the bandits, even as they recruit informants who manage businesses on their behalf and remit profits to them.

”The money made by bandits is expended mainly on purchase of more arms and ammunition, food,   logistic and medical aid, psychotropic substances(drugs), payment of informants and accomplices, the establishment of apparently legitimate businesses managed by informants and associates within communities and maintenance of marabouts who provide supposed spiritual support for successes in operations,” he said.

According to him, the state government’s strategies to address the security challenges affecting the state have been sustained through the third quarter of 2021.

“These are strengthening the human intelligence-gathering networks in critical areas, providing material and logistic support to the Federal Security Agencies, empowering the Kaduna State Peace Commission to engage communities and incline them towards a peaceful resolution of differences and supporting strong responses to areas considered main flashpoints in the state.”

While acknowledging that ground and air assaults have been intensified by the military in areas across the state, the Commissioner said these clearance operations were a response to a body of credible intelligence confirming the presence of bandit camps in those areas.