By Ahmed Ajikobi
If the stories coming out of Kaiama town and some surrounding villages in the Kaiama Local Government Area in the kwara north are anything to go by, then armed bandits who have turned most parts of northern Nigeria into killing fields are right here on kwara soil and their presence is already sprouting sorrow, tears and blood in the affected communities. According to a report sourced from popular blogger and social critic, Olusegun Olusola , popularly known as Sholyments, these bandits have “embarked on killing spree since last year with notable people as well as local security guards (Vigilantes) becoming prime targets of their lethal agenda which had been occurring without any hinderances.”
Top among the gruesome killings that have shocked Kaiama town recently, the report said, was that of a notable community leader, Alhaji Abubakar Usman, who was said to have been killed by the bandits in his farm situated in Bezira , a nearby village to Kaima township at the early hour of Sunday( yesterday).
Alhaji Usman, whose dead body was allegedly found on his farm was said to have resisted attack when the criminal bandits invaded his farm and tried to kidnap him.
“The struggle and resistance with the bandits may have prompted his killing by bandits whose mission was to kidnap him for ransom ,one of the villagers who preferred anonymity said on telephone conversation with our correspondent,” Sholyments reported.
The popular blogger reported further that there have been reported cases of kidnapping which eventually resulted in killings of Kaiman residents since last year. “On December 13, about four plank dealers were said to have been kidnapped while working in sawmill . The bandit according to sources had demanded for millions of naira which was eventually raised by family members to secure the victims release.”
“But at the point of giving kidnappers the ransom, the two persons who took the ransom to the kidnappers were also kidnapped and fresh ransom was demanded by the kidnappers as condition to release them while they still kept their earlier hostages.”
“The action of the bandits infuritiated the community leaders who arranged for the ransom. The community later pretended to agree with the fresh demand and promised to meet up with the ransom but this time , they ambushed the kidnappers with local Vigilante who followed the persons who carried the second ransoms in a sinister manner.”
“Upon sighting those who brought the ransom , the kidnappers advanced to pick their loots unknowingly to them that some Vigilantes were laying ambush. The Vigilantes opened fire against the bandits but unfortunately, they were overpowered by more sophisticated weapons from bandits while some of them sustained serious gunshot injuries.”
“The bandits who succeeded in taking the fresh ransom also alerted their colleagues of the confrontation from those who brought the ransoms. The other bandits who were infuriated by the story decided to kill the three persons in their custody but luckily one of them had escaped.”
“The whereabout of the remaining victim is still unknown as at press time as body of other victims was discovered yesterday when Vigilantes in conjunction with the escaped victim combed the forest to locate the bandits,”
The people of Kaiama, according to Sholyments, have expressed disappointment against the government of Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq who they claimed had abandoned the town to the mercy of criminal bandits who now kill their people like mere fowls .
“Many Kaiama residents have come on social media to express shock at the increasing state of bandits killings especially notable people who are contributing to the progress of the town . One Mohammed took to the “Pioner Group”, a popular whatsapp platform to raise alarm over the helpless situation in Kaima.He posted thus:
“This is another black weekend to entire kma community. A great lost indeed. Last three year January was was a black month for nuku community and the entire kaiama vigilantee group, last year December, it was kemamji community. Last week was tungamaje, venra/ kaiama vigilantee, today it was Bezira community. Who knows the next person/community. KDA, LDA, political office holders, traditional title holders, Stakeholders, religion leaders kaiama youths. Kaiama is in a state of emergency. In a middle of a cold war. This goes beyon condolence messages. Let wake up from our slumber before we are completely consume by our enemies.sentimate apart. It happened in Oyo national Park. Same Last three years and the sorrounded communities tackle it immediately”
Another person who reacted according to him,was quoted thus: “Let me tell you we don’t believe there is government in kwara state. Since last year when Kaima had came under attacks, Goverment of Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq has not done anything to help us . We informed the police but nothing was done , infact , those who work with Abdulrazaq are no more picking our calls , we have been so neglected and we are doing everything on our own ” , Said one of the community leaders who craved anonymity,” the report concluded.
National Pilot however sought the reactions of both the state government and the police to the report.
When contacted the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on security, Alh. Muyideen Aliyu declined comment and instead referred our reporter to the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor,Rafiu Ajakaye who also declined to speak with our reporter, requesting instead that the inquiry be channeled through sms
As at the time of filing this report, the text message sent to his WhatsApp by our reporter was not responded to while signal clearly indicated he was online.
Reacting to the incident however on the telephone interview, the kwara state police command spokesperson SP Ajayi When National Pilot contacted, the Senior Special Assistant, on security, Alh. Muyideen Aliyu on the development said he can not said anything and refered our reporter Chief press secretary to the Governor,Rafiu Ajakaye who also said he don’t want speak with our reporter adding that he preferred text message.
As at the time of filing this report,text message sent to his WhatsApp by our reporter was not responded to while online.
Reacting to the incident however in a telephone interview, the kwara state police command spokesperson SP Ajayi Okasanmi told National pilot that, One Yusuf Yakub of Bezira village via Kaiama reported at Kaiama police station of the discovery of the corpse of his brother by name Abubakar Usman who went to his farm and didn’t come back home.
“The man was discovered to have died of suspected gun shot injury.
His death led to a protest by some youth of the village, police waded in, calm has been restored and investigation into the matter has commenced.
“What you are saying about that it has been happening for long is news to the Command, we have been dealing with issues of kidnapping and other crimes in the state with all our vigour, and the command will continue to do just that.”
By Ahmed Ajikobi