The Kaduna State Government has imposed a 24-hour curfew in Kafanchan, the headquarters of Jema’a local government area of the state.
The curfew was imposed on Sunday after youth in the area set up road blocks and burnt vehicles on Kafanchan-Kagoro road, in retaliation of an attack on Saturday in which many people died in Godogodo Chiefdom of the state.
The News Agency of Nigeria reported that several people had been killed in the area and properties worth millions of naira were destroyed.
According to residents, who spoke to PREMIUM TIMES Monday, the youth took to the streets in retaliation of attacks carried out by herdsmen in some villages of the area.
“Kafanchan is still under siege and movement is restricted up till this Monday morning”, a resident, Hamza Maikifi, said. “But it was a disaster for residents since Saturday. Many people lost their lives and properties. Many also sustained injuries,” he said.
Mr. Maikifi also said travellers were attacked in a protest that started as peaceful.
“Youth in the area wanted to show their anger to the government on the activities of herdsmen in some villages of the area when everything went out of control,” he said.
A civil servant, Hannatu Bature, said “even as I am talking to you now, we are hearing of arrival of more soldiers and policemen.
“The government was actually quick to respond to the irate boys, if not, the whole of Kafanchan would have been burnt to ashes.
“Some people were attacking innocent travellers and you know Kaduna; it would have transformed into a religious or ethnic crisis,” Ms. Bature said.
She urged government to “handle this herdsmen-villagers crisis once and for all”.
The interim chairman of Jema’a local government, Bege Katuka, told journalists in Kafanchan that the curfew would remain in force until normalcy was restored.
Mr. Katuka said the measure was to check further breach of the law by youth who were setting up illegal road blocks.
“We have received reports that youth had barricaded Kafanchan-Kagoro road along Garaje area and have burnt cars belonging to innocent persons,’’ he said.
“What is paramount now is the security of lives and property. The security will not relent in its effort to repel the attackers.’’