Governor Nasir El Rufai has vowed to enforce the various existing laws that impose costs on communities that permit violence in their midst, in order to stem the intermittent crises in Kaduna state. The governor, who disclosed that additional divisions of the police will be established in state, stated that no matter the number of boots on the ground the ultimate guarantee of harmony is the willingness of people to live in peace.
The governor who issued the warning in an address during the emergency meeting of the State Council of Chiefs on Tuesday, revealed that the laws have the effect of making community members to bear the cost of repairs of damage arising from crises.
Governor El-Rufai mentioned that the various provisions of the Riots Damage Law of 1958, the Collective Punishment Law of 1915 and the Peace Preservation Law of 1917 will henceforth be enforced.
According to him, “these laws impose on communities that permit violence in their midsts obligations to be charged and levied monies for the costs of repairing damage done during episodes of violence. ”
The governor promised that his administration will provide details of the enforcement of these extant laws.
El Rufai also warned the Royal Fathers that government will no longer accept excuses from them when crises erupt in their domains.
“In situations of unrest, it is common for traditional rulers to disclaim any control over unruly youths. It is an excuse we can no longer accept. Where significant sections of a community disdain the counsel or authority of their traditional ruler, it imperils the rationale for keeping the traditional institution and the occupant of the office,” he argued.
The governor who traced the genesis of crises in Kaduna state, said that the first ethno-religious in the state occurred in Kasuwan Magani in 1980, adding that “since them, it appears that a constituency has developed which believes that violence pays, and is convinced that violence has no consequences for the perpetrators. ”
According to him, “it is time for a powerful coalition for peace to speak frankly and support actions against those who menace the right of our citizens to live in peace wherever they choose. ”
Governor El-Rufai also provided an update on casualties from the Sunday incident in parts of Kaduna. He disclosed that 22 people lost their lives during the last crisis that occurred on Sunday while 44 others sustained injuries, adding that several properties were also damaged within Kaduna metropolis.
The governor who vowed to prosecute the perpetrators of the crisis, however lamented the slow pace of prosecution in the courts. He stated that Kaduna State is working to secure the approval of the National Judicial Council in order to expand the bench with 20 additional high court judges.
In addition, El Rufai said that government is working with Kaduna State Police Command to establish a police division in Narayi and Sabon Tasha. He expressed gratitude to the police authorities for agreeing to establish a police division at Kasuwan Magani.