PRESIDENT Muhammad Buhari has counselled citizens of Kaduna State not to allow the State to become ‘home of violence’.
Addressing religious and traditional rulers in Kaduna on Tuesday over the sectarian crisis that engulfed the State, the President contended that Kaduna was once the home of the premier as well as the home of new Nigeria.
“Kaduna which was once the home of the premier and home of the new Nigeria must not earn itself a new name – home of violence, saying, the Federal Security Agencies will hunt and prosecute all those who sponsored these acts of violence.
According to him: “On behalf of the Federal Government, I commiserate with the government and people of Kaduna State. I also wish to express our condolence on the loss of His Royal Highness, the Agom Adara, who served his chiefdom and Kaduna State with dedication. May his soul and that of all persons that died, rest in perfect peace.”
The President then appealed to the citizens of the State to do their best to uphold peace in their respective communities, pointing out, “Chaos and anarchy tend to worsen and exacerbate whatever issues are agitating a community.
“Violence shatters and divides people and stifles the prospect of any community that succumbs to its tragic logic.”
He then commended the efforts of the Kaduna State Government in responding to and managing the crisis, maintaining that, “More federal security assets are being provided at the request of the Kaduna State Government to help uphold and keep the peace.
“The Federal Government will continue to work to ensure that more security assets are recruited and deployed across the country to protect all citizens going about their lawful business and to reinforce the authority of the government.
“In this light, the Federal Government welcomes the decision of the Kaduna State Government and its local governments to build and provide facilities for the take-off of more police divisions and civil defence offices in the state.
“On their part, citizens also have a duty to be law-abiding in their conduct and within their communities. There is a need to avoid violence as a tool of negotiation or obtaining an advantage, and learn to listen to each other and commit to resolving differences through peaceful means.
“I have noted the concerns raised by the Governor of Kaduna State about the outstanding issues of payment of compensation and resettlement of communities that have lingered since the post-election violence of 2011. I assure you that the Federal Government will give due consideration to the matter.
Earlier, in his welcome address, the Kaduna State Governor, Nasir Elrufai, remarked that “What we are battling in Kaduna State is the legacy of nearly 40 years of violence and impunity.
“The current government of Kaduna State is persuaded that it has a solemn obligation to lead the State towards overcoming the tragic legacy of strife.
“Kaduna State is not the only diverse place on this planet, and the people who live in it must not remain trapped in a whirl of hate and division.
“The first ethno-religious clash in the State happened in Kasuwan Magani in 1980. Many other clashes have sadly happened since, without the perpetrators being sufficiently sanctioned.
“This resulted in breeding and empowering constituencies of impunity that believe that violence pays and that violence has no negative consequence for the planners and perpetrators.”
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