From Sola Ojo, Kaduna

Atyap Community Development Association (ACDA), yesterday, said 42 persons were killed, 7 wounded and 338 houses set ablaze in the latest attacks in several communities in Zangon Kataf Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

The association which rolled out the statistics when its leadership addressed journalists at the secretariat of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Kaduna Council, added that eight cars, 13 motorcycles, generators, food and domestic items were either looted or razed in the onslaught against Atyap chiefdom.

President of the association, Samuel T. Achie, who read the press statement, called on the Kaduna State government to come alive to its responsibility and put an end to “condemnable killings” of its citizens, by fishing out and bringing the perpetrators to justice.

Until the latest attacks, he said the Fulani and Atyap communities had respected the peace pact, which they signed, stressing that the association found it difficult to unravel the provocation that sent scores to their early grave and property worth millions destroyed.

Samuel said: “In all the attacks in the 12 different villages as of July 15, 2021, a total of 42 people were killed and 338 houses burnt with 7 people wounded.

Several other valuables were not left out as eight cars, 13 motorcycles, generators, food and domestic items were either looted or consumed by fire

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“Our revered places of worship were not spared as seven churches and their pastorium were razed by fire in various locations. Among the houses razed down by the the Fulani militia were the family compound of our paramount ruler, His Royal Highness, Sir Dominic Yahaya in Magamiya and the family compound of Retired Major General Shekari Biliyock in Abuyab, a former commandant of the Nigeria-African Peace Keeping Arm, the ECOMOG.

“The entire Atyap nation seems to be at a loss to explain these senseless killings by the Fulani militia as we have bent over to implement the decisions of the peace accord reached with the parties involved. The question is what else were we supposed to do that was not done? It seems apparent that these attacks are being sponsored with larger motives than meet the eyes.”

He continuing, he said: “With all these being said, in concrete terms we can submit that the our desire for peace is under threat by the Fulani militia. We felt that we will be better off if we stay in peace as brothers as was the case in time past.

“The Commander-in-Chief of the Federal Republic of Nigeria once said that anybody found in possession of deadly arms should be shot at sight. But as I am talking to you, Fulani militia still graze in Atyap land with AK47 hung on their shoulders and shoot any Kataf man on sight.

“There is no place in all the areas attacked that is more than 10 to 15 minutes’ drive from one security checkpoint to the other. It is not only lives and houses that were destroyed, but crops and places of worship inclusive.”

The Atyap community leaders appealed to the government to provide more troops, humanitarian relief materials and a peaceful atmosphere for all, warning that the people would be left with no other option than to protect themselves with all legal means.