Less than one week after Tukur Buratai, chief of army staff, laid foundation for the establishment of a battalion at Ungwan Yashi area of Zangon Kataf local government area of Kaduna state, some persons have destroyed it.
In his reaction to the destruction, Nasir el-Rufai, governor of the state, said the act had confirmed that the “conflict entrepreneurs” are determined to continue to create obstacles and setback to stabilisation and peace building efforts.
“I received the news with shock over the unfortunate destruction of foundation laying structure of the proposed Nigerian army battalion in southern Kaduna,” el-Rufai said in a statement signed by Samuel Aruwan, his spokesman.
“The very structure we erected to establish the long-awaited Army Barracks to assist promotion of peace and end the decades of senseless bloodletting in the southern part of Kaduna State has been destroyed.
“The situation is unfortunate, condemnable and a setback to the government’s communal stabilisation and peace building efforts, but we will not be deterred.
“We urge our people that cherish peaceful coexistence to continue to be resilient, focused and resolute in overcoming antics of forces of darkness and evil. Those that did this are determined to derail the contributions of the security agencies, having failed to spread their tentacles of hate, bigotry and penchant for divisiveness.”
Gov. el-Rufai appealed to the people to support security agencies in their bid to restore normalcy in the troubled region. He vowed that those who destroyed the foundation “will not go scot free”.
“I want to use this medium to appeal to all men and women of conscience to remain firm and optimistic, while government in collaboration with security agencies, civil society, religious and traditional institutions will continue to work assiduously for peace and security of life and property,” he said.
“Finally, all those that have their hands in the destruction of this structure will not go free. The security agencies will fish out the perpetrators, and those found to be involved, or engaged in omissions that led to the destruction of public property will be brought to justice without fear or favour.”