70/30 ratio exposes your mindset, SOKAPU tells Elrufai

By Israel Bulus, Kaduna
The Southern Kaduna People’s Union (SOKAPU), has said that the comment made by Governor Nasir Ahmad Elrufai, that Muslims in the state are 70 percent with Christians having only 30 percent was not only false, but exposed his mindset.

SOKAPU, an umbrella body of the Southern Kaduna race, also said that the governor lied by saying no killing has taken place in the area for the last six months.

A statement issued by the National President of the Union, Barr Solomon Musa, SOKAPU said it is getting a peep into the mindset of the Governor through such utterances.

“We are now realizing that some of the policies and actions of the governor since assuming power have been tainted by his dangerous belief that Muslims hold the majority in the state.”

The skewed appointments that we have seen in Kaduna so far are the worst that we have seen for a long time. For the first time, the Governor, the Minister, the SSG, the Chief of Staff, the Principal Private Secretary, the Speaker of the House of Assembly and so many key aides of the governor are from his own stock. This to us is deliberate and a true manifestation of his belief that fairness and equity shouldn’t be reflected in his administration,” the statement said.

We also want to tell the governor that he goofed when he said that no killing took place in southern Kaduna in the last six months. On March 24, 2016 Mr. Daniel was shot dead in his house around 7pm in Antor, Aboro District of Numana Chiefdom. Same March, a man was butchered in Ancha Gida, Ancha district of Ninzo chiefdom in his farm by suspected Fulani gunmen. Another man was killed last December on his farm by suspected fulani herdsmen at Yaute, Wasa district of Numana chiefdom.”

Read the full statement
The Southern Kaduna Peoples Union (SOKAPU) watched with amazement, the interview that the Governor of Kaduna state, His Excellency Mallam Nasir El-Rufai granted Channels TV on April 6, 2016 where he said “Here in kaduna we have a significant Muslim majority, 70%, and 30 %Christian minority ..”

The Governor who was talking on the programme ‘Sunrise daily’ was trying hard to explain the effort his administration has made in curbing the incessant killings in Southern Kaduna. In the process, he also declared that no killing from suspected Fulani herdsmen had taken place in the zone in the last six months.

We were both amazed and concerned at the religious ratio of 70 percent Muslims to 30 per cent Christians that he gave on national TV. This is because, based on the 2006 census, there was no question asking Nigerians their religious leaning. So it came as a shock that Governor El-Rufai could carelessly and recklessly give the ratio of the two major religions in the state without any empirical evidence. That to us is a most unfortunate statement from a governor who is expected to know the risk of stoking the flames of religious intolerance by deliberately misleadingly saying Muslims make up 70 per cent of the population of Kaduna state. Clearly the governor’s assertion is not buttressed by any known fact or data. Then, on what fact was he speaking?

Gradually SOKAPU is getting a peep into the mindset of the Governor through such utterances and we are now realizing that some of the policies and actions of the governor since assuming power have been tainted by his dangerous belief that Muslims hold the majority in the state.

The skewed appointments that we have seen in Kaduna so far are the worst that we have seen for a long time. For the first time, the Governor, the Minister, the SSG, the Chief of Staff, the Principal Private Secretary, the Speaker of the House of Assembly and so many key aides of the governor are from his own stock. This to us is deliberate and a true manifestation of his belief that fairness and equity shouldn’t be reflected in his administration.

We also want to tell the governor that he goofed when he said that no killing too place in southern Kaduna in the last six months. On March 24, 2016 Mr. Daniel was shot dead in his house around 7pm in Antor, Aboro District of Numana Chiefdom. Same March, a man was butchered in Ancha Gida, Ancha district of Ninzo chiefdom in his farm by suspected Fulani gunmen. Another man was killed last December on his farm by suspected fulani herdsmen at Yaute, Wasa district of Numana chiefdom.

The governor probably doesn’t consider those killings worthy of his attention since in the same interview he said the killers were victims of the 2011 crisis, and then went further to justify the killings on innocent people of Southern Kaduna by saying that “And of course you know the Fulani have a long memory of revenging any killings; so their relations were coming from other countries to revenge the killings..” this assertion is to say the least most revealing and unfortunate!!

SOKAPU is advising the governor to concentrate on his role of governing the state and avoid dabbling into areas that he very well knows can cause serious animosity amongst adherents of the different religions in the state.

SOKAPU is also watching with dismay and genuine concern the ongoing threat by the Kaduna State Government through the Kaduna State Urban Planning and Development Agency (KASUPDA), to demolish thousands of houses accommodating thousands of people at the Gbagyi Villa behind the Sabon Tasha campus of the Kaduna Polytechnic.

Our concern is borne from the fact that 80% of the property owners of Gbagyi villa belong to the various ethnic nationalities that make up SOKAPU, whose interests and wellbeing we have sworn to protect.

While we wholeheartedly support every effort of transforming Kaduna State into a better planned State, we however sincerely and patriotically disagree with the idea of demolishing a whole community under the blurred excuse of ‘absence of a building permit’. The haste and determination of the state to put into physical, emotional and socio- economic ruins, through the wanton destruction of billions of Naira investment of law abiding, long-time residents of Gbagyi villa, truly jolts SOKAPU.

Our worry is very justified in view of the truth that there is no justified pressure on the part of the state government or Kaduna Polytechnic for that developed, populated space to be demolished for an immediate and overriding public interest.

SOKAPU hereby calls on the government of Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna state to:
· To obey all court pronouncements on matters concerning Gbagyi villa and any other court order for that matter, as expected of one who has sworn to respect the constitution of Nigeria.
· Consider the impact of demolishing Gbagyi villa on the most vulnerable, innocent members of that community, including members of its 17 Schools and other thousands of vulnerable persons who also voted the governor into power.
· We expect the governor to think of less injurious options on the basis of justice, peace, security and sustainable development for Kaduna that would be acceptable to all parties.
· We are not, by this saying we are in support of any person that encroached into the Polytechnic land that has been demarcated and left for them by virtue of the Government’s White Paper dated 12th May 2011, evidenced by the Plan and description of the land. But for those outside the demarcated line reached in 2011, SOKAPU calls on the Government to kindly respect the decision of the white paper and reconsider its decision to demolish.
· SOKAPU’s advice to the state government is to even look at this issue as an opportunity to boost its revenue base by asking those without the building permits – if there are any – to go and obtain the relevant permits as required by law. SOKAPU is sure of complete compliance with the added advantage of enhancing the government’s image as not only firm but kind to its people.

Sign
Barrister Solomon Musa
SOKAPU President

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