Over 1,500 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) from various communities in Kaduna South Senatorial District have returned to shelter camps after the return of hostilities between Fulani herders and Atyap farmers.
Communities in Southern Kaduna, especially Zangon Kataf, have been engulfed in attacks from late June, 2021, with the recent culminating in the killing of over 30 persons and burning of several homes last week.
At the Mercy IDP Camp, now Gidan Rahama Christian Foundation, located in Zonkwa, headquarters of Zangon Kataf Local Government Area, there are IDPs from 20 villages which include Jankasa, Ungwan Ruhogo, Matyei, Makarau, Kahuwa, Gora and Warkan, all in Zangon Kataf LGA.
It is the major camp for mostly Christian IDPs, while the Fulani IDPs are scattered among relatives in various places such as Rahama in Kauru LGA, Manchok in Kaura LGA, Ladduga in Kachia LGA and Zango Town in Zangon Kataf LGA, as well as Ganawuri in Plateau State.
The Coordinator and Founder of Mercy Camp, Rev Gambo Waziri, said the camp was forced to reopen as a result of renewed attacks after four months of respite.
Rev Waziri said, “We have about 1,200 IDPs in the camp now, and one of the victims here, Faith Titus, gave birth to a boy on Thursday evening.”
Waziri, who called on the state and federal emergency agencies for support, said, “Even though we have little foodstuff given to us by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), it is not enough for the IDPs we have now.”
Recounting his ordeal, one of the survivors, Danlami Joseph, from Kahuwa village in Atyap Chiefdom, said he lost his father and twin brother when the attackers invaded their village on Sunday, July 11, 2021.
Joseph said, “I escaped with my mother, but six people were killed in our village, including my father and my twin brother.”
Also speaking on the destruction from their end, the spokesperson of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) in Kaduna, Ibrahim Bayero Zango, said 300 Fulani houses were burnt down in 13 villages including Ungwan Gawayi (Rugar Alhaji Bala), Magada Kura (Rugar Jafaru), Unguwar Jaba (Rugar Sa’idu), Magamiya 2 (Rugar Fada) and Gidan Wuka (Rugar Yahaya).
Zango said, “All the Fulani who used to live in those areas have fled to various places after losing everything.”