The situation has further been complicated by the involvement of the predominantly Muslim Fulani herdsmen, also referred to as the Fulani Militia, who have been clashing frequently with Christian farmers.
At a Dec. 22 interdenominational memorial service for the 40 people killed in Mallagum, mourners were encouraged to take defensive measures against a years-long spate of terrorism and violence in the largely Christian farming communities of northern and central Nigeria.
In the Jan. 10 interview with ACI Africa, Father Dyikuk said in reference to the security challenge in Nigeria: “It is not clear if the government can solve the problem because there is lack of political will to do so.”
“The security agencies can deal with the problem but they have to be given command from the top,” he told ACI Africa.
He continued: “The ethnic cleansing happening in Southern Kaduna can be tamed if the problem is named for what it is and all stakeholders, government, traditional rulers, politicians, religious leaders, women, and youth leaders cooperate to provide intelligence to security operatives.”
“The situation is difficult because the terrorists operate a guerilla tactic of hit and run. So, the security [agents] find themselves fighting a pseudo-enemy,” the convener of the Media Team Network Initiative (MTNI) told ACI Africa.
He added: “Sincerity of purpose, commitment in terms of patriotism to nation first, and not pandering to religious and ethnic cleavages would bring the insecurity in Southern Kaduna and by extension Nigeria to an end.”
This story was first published by ACI Africa, CNA’s African news partner. It has been adapted by CNA.