Birnin Gwari Emirates Progressive Union (BEPU) in Birni Gwari local government area of Kaduna state has condemned the lynching of two terrorists by residents.
They, however, said the facts available to them showed the slain bandits were not herders but mercenaries on terrorists’ mission from the Republic of Sudan.
Governor Nasir El-Rufa’i, had, through the state’s commissioner for internal security and home affairs, Samuel Aruwan, condemned the killing of the two herders by a mob in the local government area.
“The Governor of Kaduna state, Malam Nasir el-Rufa’i, has condemned in the strongest terms the killing of two herders by a mob in Birnin Gwari LGA.
“Security agencies reported that the mob forcefully seized the two herders from security personnel, on unsubstantiated claims that they were linked with banditry. The mob then lynched and burnt the herders, even though they had not been found complicit of the allegations.
“Governor el-Rufai expressed deep concern at the violent actions of the mob, and strongly condemned the extra-judicial killings. He re-iterated the place of lawful methods as the only acceptable option in confronting any suspicions of criminality,” the statement had said.
But the community countered the government’s position, saying evidence at their disposal proved to the contrary.
Chairman, Birnin Gwari Emirate Progressive Union (BEPU), Malam Ishaq Usman Kasai said this in a statement Monday in Kaduna.
He decried government’s rapid conclusion that the two men were herders ‘without conclusive evidence.’
He, however, commended government’s commencement of investigation into their issue while tasking those carrying out the investigation to unravel the true identity of the slain bandits.
“Birnin Gwari Emirate Progressive Union (BEPU) is saddened with the mob action by aggrieved youths in Birnin Gwari on Sunday 2nd October, 2022 where two alleged “herdsmen” were killed in a cruel and gruesome manner.
“BEPU, a peaceful union is clearly against any form of mob action under any guise and is hereby drawing the attention of the citizens not to resort to taking laws into their hands irrespective of level of frustration and provocation.
“While lynching of the suspected bandits is highly condemnable, the Union observes with deep concern the way the issue has been reported to deliberately portray Birnin Gwari in bad taste, and targeted to prove a false narrative on the issue to endanger the helpless innocent citizens of Birnin Gwari local government.
“While we appreciate governments’ resolve to investigate and bring perpetrators of this primitive act to book, we equally observe that, government officials seem to be in haste in issuing the sensitive statement without scrutiny of the identities of the ‘alleged herders’ that were lynched by mob action.
“Available records which BEPU are privy to, shows that, the lynched ‘herders’ were terrorists’ mercenaries from the Republic of Sudan. Therefore, the alleged lynched persons are not herdsmen as falsely reported earlier but international criminal syndicates that have been terrorising Birnin Gwari local government area. BEPU findings revealed that the alleged lynching occurred after the suspects forcefully snatched a motorcycle from a farmer at the outskirts of Birnin Gwari main town.
“Therefore, BEPU is concerned to observe that the statement issued by government on the issue did not equally capture and commiserate with the innocent citizens of Birnin Gwari that were attacked at different locations for the past five days.
“On the same day when the mob action occurred, one driver was killed and scores were kidnapped at Dogon Dawa and Tabanni areas. This is in addition to killings and kidnapping of the innocent citizens of Birnin Gwari on the roads, in farms and their homes which have become a daily occurrence.
“Citizens are urged to always channel their grievances to appropriate authorities and above all continue to devote themselves to prayers for divine intervention in the current insecurity situation. The Union once more appreciates the efforts and successes recorded by the resilient security forces in their efforts to sanitize Birnin Gwari area and calls on them to step-up the operations into communities that surround Birnin Gwari town where bandits are currently demanding and forcing communities to pay “protection fee” and crop harvesting levies, respectively.
“BEPU once more, appreciates the effort of security agencies towards restoring peace in our area and urged government officials in showing concerns to any ugly situation to always be in a cautious mood in issuing any statement that is capable of undermining the peace loving, helpless people that are under siege by the terrorists. This is with view to averting further escalation of the situation,” Kasai said.