Suspected herdsmen on Thursday launched an attack on Kizachi Chawai, Kauru Local Government Area of Kaduna State, killing 11 and razed 64 houses, a local chief said.
Women and children were said to be amongst those killed after the herdsmen breached the community at 6:30 p.m., shot indiscriminately, Peoples Gazette understand.
Many of the villagers were said to have fled for safety, as many are still missing, said community secretary John Wani.
Mr. Wani said some of those who could not run were killed and 11 corpses have so far been discovered. The Gazette has yet to independently confirm casualty figures, but a security officer in the area confirmed the attack and said it was linked to herdsmen.
The incident was said to have lasted for more than three hours despite the presence of the military at Kiffin Chawai which is not more than two kilometres from the scene.
Also, three victims of the attack sustained injuries from gunshots and were taken to an undisclosed hospital for treatment.
The state has in the years witnessed a series of attacks and kidnappings for ransom.
Days ago, the state governor Nasir El-Rufai, said he wants bandits to stop their deadly campaign on schools and villages, which intensified following his rhetoric that he would not negotiate or pay a ransom.
Speaking at an expanded meeting of the state security council on Tuesday, Mr. El-rufai said that private citizens could preach to bandits to repent, but his administration will not.
He stated that “We will not engage with bandits or kidnappers. Private citizens like clerics and clergymen can do so in their individual capacities, to preach to them and ask them to repent. We also want them to repent but it is not our job to ask them to do so.”
According to Mr. El-rufai, the most appropriate approach to combat the farmers/herdsmen crisis “is for nomadic herdsmen to live more sedentary lives in order for them to be more productive”, as well as giving “their children education and access to better healthcare”.
A spokesman for the police in Kaduna did not immediately return a request seeking comments about the latest killings in Southern Kaduna, which has consistently suffered deadly attacks from rampaging herdsmen on a quest for scarce grazing resources.