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Kajuru Death Toll Rises To 130, Says el-Rufai

Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna State, yesterday, disclosed that the death toll from Kajuru attack has risen to 130 people from the 66 he reported on Friday last week.

The state government had last Friday evening announced that 66 persons were killed by suspected gunmen in Kajuru local government of the state on the eve of the cancelled presidential and parliamentary elections.

However, the state chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and some Nigerians, have dismissed claims by el-Rufai that 66 persons were killed in the attack.

After the meeting between Buhari and the service chiefs, el-Rufai described those who still doubt the killings as irresponsible.

It was learnt that the meeting between the president and security chiefs focused on the states that have higher than average security challenges than others.

The governors of Borno and Adamawa States were also attended the meeting.

el- Rufai disclosed that some arrest had been made and that that the suspects would be arraigned in court.

According to him, the arrests have continued because the more the police dig into the matter, the more it was clear that there was a deliberate plan to wipe out certain communities, declaring that “it is not accidental or spontaneous.”

He stated that “it is a plan akin to genocide and the more the police dig into the matter, the more arrest will be made.

“I think that anybody, who is still questioning whether these attacks took place or not, is being grossly irresponsible. I think that as the governor of the state and everyone knows me and my records of public service, I would not be irresponsible enough to stand before the media and say something has happened that has not happened.

“I don’t work based on telephone calls for rumours. As the governor of the state, the first thing I receive every morning is a security briefing on what happens in the last 24 hours. That is the first thing I read and I ask questions and I work on the basis of security briefings from the experts – the Garrison Commander, the commissioner of police, the head of the Air Force.

“We have every security agency in Kaduna State and they send me briefings including the DSS. I work only on that basis. Anybody that wants to contradict what I said should have superior information and it is impossible for you other than the president of the country to have superior information that I have about my state.

“So, people are being grossly irresponsible, I don’t know what their agenda is. But I know there is a prevailing narrative in the Nigerian media that only certain lives are more important than others. We see that clearly in the slant of reporting and the denial.

“The fact that you are still asking me these questions two days after we have proved all doubts that all those people claiming that this didn’t happen, they first said I lied; that it didn’t happen, then they started saying, no, the numbers are not what they are.

“And now, what we are hearing, the last report we got is that over 130 people were killed not even 66. And the Fulani leaders are providing the names of all these people, we have the list and we will release it to the press.

“And I don’t want to be groused but we can release pictures of the people killed and how the army had to be there to help bury them two days after they were killed because the bodies were decomposing, but some people are being irresponsible, they are pretending this has not happened because it does not fit their ethnic or partisan narrative.

It is totally irresponsible because this can happen to anyone of us. And the day we stop sanctifying human lives, the day we begin to think that one life is more important for headlines than another, this country is finished, because, every human being has equal capacity for good and evil,” el-Rufai said.

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