Kaduna killings: Military deploys fighter aircraft, special forces

The Nigerian Air Force has deployed two combat helicopters, a DA-42 surveillance aircraft and a detachment of Special Forces to Kaduna State to curtail the crisis and killings going on in parts of the state.

The air force made the deployments on Sunday noting that the aircraft had started aerial patrols over flashpoints in the state and the Special Forces had joined other military personnel in Kaduna to stop “the spate of senseless killings.”

Kaduna State has been in crisis since October 18 when violent clashes reportedly claimed several lives in Kasuwan Magani in the Kajuru Local Government Area. Although the state government imposed a 24-hour curfew, it did not stop the killing of a kidnapped traditional ruler of Kachia, Dr Maiwada Galadima.

Other volatile areas where the police said hoodlums attempted to destroy places of worship included Kawo and Hayin Banki.

The air force said on Monday that it had deployed its fighter aircraft and Special Forces in the state for patrols and to restore normalcy in the troubled areas, in conjunction with other security agencies.

The NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola, stated this, noting that the air force had begun “aerial patrols over flashpoints in the state.”

Daramola said, “The NAF on Sunday deployed a detachment of Special Forces personnel to Kaduna in support of internal security operations in the state. The detachment will join other NAF personnel in Kaduna and other security agencies to ensure that the spate of senseless killings in some parts of the state is brought to a complete end and normalcy expeditiously restored.

“The deployment is in addition to the earlier deployment of two helicopters and a DA-42 Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance aircraft on October 22. Both aircraft and others have since been conducting aerial patrols over flashpoints in the state.”

Also, the police have arrested 93 suspects in connection with the killings and wanton destruction of properties in Kaduna State.

The force   said 43 of them were being prosecuted while 50 suspects under investigation would be arraigned in court soon.

The police spokesman, Moshood Jimoh, who disclosed this in Abuja on Monday, while parading some kidnap suspects, explained that investigation was being intensified to arrest other suspects still at large.

He gave the assurance that the police in collaboration with other security and safety agencies would continue the ongoing confidence-building patrols throughout Kaduna State “in order to sustain the normalcy that has been restored.”

Jimoh said the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, had directed the Assistant Inspector-General of Police, Zone 7 headquarters, to meet with all the stakeholders.

Meanwhile, the police have paraded 10 suspects who allegedly robbed one Abdulbasir Jargaba in Funtua Local Government Area of Katsina, of valuables and also abducted his son.

They are Hussaini Abdullahi, 42; Ibrahim Umar, 60; Abubakar Idris, 20; Samaila Abdullahi, 28; Saidu Ibrahim 20 and Halidu Ibrahim, 30.

Others included Shaibu Maikudi, 20; Ibrahim Alhasan, 45, Mohammed Adamu, 22 and Shehu Lawal, 32.

The police said five AK4 rifles, one locally made pump action rifle and 105 AK47 ammunition were recovered from the suspects.

Jimoh said, “On August 12, 2018, the suspects invaded the house of Jargaba and kidnapped his eight-year-old son, Abdulhazeez Basir, held him in captivity for 11 days and released him after collecting ransom.

“The operatives of the IGP Special Strike Force on violent crimes working on actionable intelligence trailed the suspects to their hideout in Birnin Gwari Forest off Sabowa Road, Katsina, Katsina State and arrested them after a fierce gun battle.”

Meanwhile, normalcy has begun to return to  Kaduna metropolis and its environs following a week of unrest which led to the killing of hundreds of persons and the destruction of property in the state.

Commercial activities gradually picked as the major market in the metropolis – Sheik Gummi Central Market- was open to residents.

But most shop, especially those belonging to the Igbo traders in the heart of the city, were still under lock and key.

A communal crisis broke out last Thursday at Kasuwan Magani over a disagreement between the Adara youth and Hausa, leading to the killing of hundreds of people.

The police in the state confirmed the killing of 55 persons during the clash and another 26 confirmed by the State Emergency Management Agency following a reprisal in the state capital.

Coming out of two crises after the relaxation of the 24-hour-curfew imposed on the state, residents still watch over their backs for fear of the unknown.

Though banks and other financial institu      banks notified customers of closure at 2 pm.

Residents holed for week besieged Automated Teller Machine as early as 7 am to withdraw cash. Some were disappointed.
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