Residents of the Birnin-Gwari local government area in Kaduna state have expressed deep concern over the security challenges in the area in recent years.
They observed that the situation of insecurity had seriously affected their normal way of life and had a negative impact on their livelihoods.
A resident of the Buruku community, Alhaji Shuaibu Isah, explained that the Kaduna – Birnin Gwari highway that was once a hive of activity is now a ghost in itself.
He said vehicles carrying passengers and goods from the north to the south of the country usually pass through this route and normally stop in some communities to make purchases, which increases the income of residents.
According to him, “Today, with the insecurity in the region, the road is deserted because only a few vehicles use the road due to the activities of the men of the underworld.
“As I speak to you, it has become history because the road has become a ghost in itself due to the activities of bandits and kidnappers.”
Also recounting her experience, Hajiya Maimuna Musa, from the Idawa community, noted that residents were forced to migrate to other towns, giving up their farmland to criminals.
She said that two days ago her nephew was killed along the road when bandits opened fire on their vehicle.
According to a driver, Murtala Yaro, the thugs smashed his vehicle with bullets. He thanked the Almighty that none of his passengers were injured.
A youth leader who sought anonymity explained that “it is only the big towns along the Kaduna – Birnin-Gwari road that you still find important activities going on.
“All the surrounding villages are deserted, which affects agriculture which is the main occupation of the people.”
When contacted, the Kaduna State Police Commissioner Umar Muri explained that the command had just deployed a team of police officers made up of Mopol, anti-kidnapping and conventional police to strengthen security in the region.
He assured that he had ordered the divisional police officers, (DPO), to work in synergy with the special working group deployed in the region.
He gave assurances that the Birnin-Gwari route would soon be a safe passage for the safety of lives and the restoration of commercial activities.