By Augustine Ehikioya
Irked by activities of criminals, the Commander Operation SAFE HAVEN (OPSH) and General Officer Commanding (GOC) 3 Division, Nigerian Army, Major General Abdulsalam Abubakar, has vowed to decisively deal with criminals perpetrating attacks leading to loss of lives and property in Southern zone of Kaduna State.
He gave the warning on Sunday 10 September, 2023, during an engagement with key stakeholders from the 5 local government areas of Kaduna State covered by OPSH.
Security Watch Africa (SWA) also gathered that General Abdulsalam said that the recurring isolated killings, destruction of farm, cow poisoning, cattle rustling, kidnappings and other sundry criminal acts must stop with immediate effect.
“He warned that those perpetrating insecurity for their selfish gains must embrace peace and find lawful means of livelihood or face the consequence of their evil motive.
“He further pointed out that, multifaceted measures are being considered to ensure the region remain untenable for the evil doers.
“While fielding response from traditional, religious and community leaders of the area, the Commander also warned the people about the consequences of shielding criminals from the security agencies.
“He further decried the influence of drug addiction among the youth as a catalyst to criminalities in the area and called for sincere commitment of the people to the course of peace.
“I urge you all to take this message to the most remote communities, warn your subjects and take the lead in the speedy settlement of disputes in your domain”. he said.
Speaking earlier, the Commander and members of his entourage paid homage to the Paramount Ruler of Atyap Chiefdom, His Royal Highness Agwatyap Dominic Gambo, where he reassured His Royal Majesty of his commitment to finding lasting solution to senseless killings and destruction of properties in the region using both kinetic and non kinetic lines of operations.
“The Commander further remarked that the response of personnel to distress calls has improved as more troops have been drafted to Southern Kaduna in the last 48 hours.
“He also assured of his commitment to justice and fairness as he vowed to deal with criminal acts, irrespective of tribe or religion.”
Those who spoke at the meeting were representatives from the Atyap, Fulani, Hausa, Ikuru, Cristian Association of Nigeria and Jamatul Nasir Islam, traditional and religious leaders.
The speakers while airing out their challenges pledged to support the strategies of OPSH in ending attacks on individuals and communities in the area by fishing out the bad eggs and handing them over to the security agencies.
The proliferation of small arms and light weapons was also noted to be a trigger to crisis in the region and all stakeholders were directed to mop up these illicit weapons and hand them over to the authorities at once.