No fewer than 12 persons, including a monarch were reportedly killed in the early hours of yesterday as armed men suspected to be cattle rustlers launched separate attacks on some villages in Faskari local government area of Katsina state.
This development is coming on the heels of President Goodluck Jonathan’s two-day state visit to Katsina to commission various projects executed by Governor Ibrahim Shema.
An eyewitness told our correspondent that he attended the funeral prayer of seven persons killed in Kuran Mota Ward of Faskari local government area, including the Ward Head, Malam Bawa Mai Unguwa.
Sources from the area reported that the rampaging armed men on arriving the area, shot sporadically into the air scaring residents before killing their victims in the ensuing pandemonium.
The sources added that while fleeing after committing the dastardly act, the armed men also killed a middle-aged man at Unguwar Rimi in Sabuwa local government area.
Similarly, reports revealed that the remaining four persons were killed by the fleeing armed men at the Mararrrabar Kindo in Faskari local government, bringing the total number of those killed to 12.
The Village Head of Maigora, Malam Abdullahi Madawakin Maigoro, also confirmed to newsmen that the armed men invaded the area and carried out the killings, adding that the deceased have all been buried them according to Islamic rites.
Our correspondent learnt that as at the time of filing this story, the residents of Kuran Mota and Unguwar Rimi Ward were packing their belongings preparing to relocate to neighbouring villages.
Unconfirmed reports said the total number of people killed in series of attacks on various communities by the rampaging criminals is no fewer than 30.
The Executive-Secretary of Katsina state Rehabilitation and Emergency Agency, Alhaji Hassan Suleiman Rawayau, who visited the area, said he was there to assess the situation and look at the possibility of setting up a camp for the affected victims.
But the Katsina state police command neither confirmed nor denied reports on the killing of the 12 persons in Faskari area.
The commands’ spokesman, DSP Aminu Abubakar Saddiq, who did not answer calls to his cell phone, simply responded to a text message by saying, “preparations for presidential visit tomorrow. Later please”.
Meanwhile, some of the projects to be commissioned by the president during his two-day official visit include the multi-billion naira Katsina Ring Road, the new Katsina Government House, the 250 bed space Katsina Orthopaedic Hospital, the Olympic Size Katsina Stadium, named Karkanda Stadium, and the Songhai Multi- Purpose Farm.