Saturday, 8 March 2014
Thousands of Northerners, Nigeriens, Chadians, Arrive North From Southern Nigeria
An estimated 10,000 Northerners and foreigners, mostly from Asaba, Port-Harcourt, Owerri, Onitsha, Warri, Uyo, Calabar and parts of the South-West, have started arriving Northern Nigeria.
They are fleeing Southern Nigeria for the fear of reprisal attacks following the recent killings of Southerners by Boko Haram sect in the North. Those attacks upon Southerners have mainly been in such areas as Damaturu, Mubi, Jimeta and Maiduguri.
Most of the Northerners, who are principally artisans and menial job-workers, were seen on heavy trucks and luxury buses passing through Lokoja, Abuja, Kaduna, and Zaria onward to the rest of the region.
Other Northerners are being sighted along the Abuja-Keffi axis, Jos, Bauchi, and Gombe, as well as in Taraba State.
Some of them who are Nigeriens, are resettling in Katsina and Kano states. There is large Nigerien community in Katsina State, which shares boundaries with Niger Republic.
On account of the emergency rule in some local government areas of Yobe and Borno, many Chadians are unable to go through to Chad and have resorted to traveling further North, from where they are connecting to Niger Republic and on to Chad.
At various former old toll gates, they are being stopped and searched in order to ensure they are not in possession of arms and other devices.
Many of them, according to findings, have not suffered any harassment or intimidation, but said they chose to flee for fear of the unknown, lamenting having left their businesses to return to the North.
In a related matter, the chairman of the African Roundtable, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, took time today to appeal to the people of Adamawa State to eschew bitterness and work for peace.
Tukur, who is the former governor of the old Gongola State, which was split into Taraba and Adamawa States, encouraged them to fight their common enemy who are outsiders and want to set the state on fire.
Governor Murtala Nyako, who rushed in from Abuja, also took time to visit the communities, and appealed to them for calm.