By; AMOS TAUNA, Kaduna
The National President of Adara Development Association (ADA), Mr. Awemi Dio Maisamari, has said that the Adara natives have suffered humiliating and abusive experiences under the leadership of Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna State.
Maisamari, made this asserting at the public hearing convened by the Judiciary Commission of Inquiry set up by the Kaduna State Government to look into the crisis in Kajuru, Kachia and Chikun local government areas and surrounding communities taking place in Kaduna, described how he was singled out for arrest during a town hall meeting convened by Governor Nasir el-Rufai in February, 2019.
Maisamari, who was defending the memo of the ADA, the umbrella body of the Adara nation, was being cross examined by the lawyer to Adara elders, Barr. Maxwell Kyon.
The Adara leader had told the Commission, that a meeting on the crisis in Kajuru and Kachia, which the Adara are claiming 95% ownership was convened in Kasuwan Magani on February 15, 2019.
“I was somewhere and I was told that the governor was holding a stakeholders meeting at the Primary Health Facility, in Kasuwan Magani,” he told the Commission.
He said the meeting attracted stakeholders made up of Hausa, Fulani, Gbagyi, Christian and Muslim clerics and influential residents of Kasuwan Magani.
“I went and found a place and sat down. When it was time to make contributions and suggestions, I raised my hand to be recognized. As soon as I stood up and introduced myself as the President of ADA, the governor said I should sit down, that he was not going to allow me speak.
“I was part of the problem, I was then promptly arrested by the police who were on the governor’s entourage. I was taken straight to the Police Force Headquarters in Kaduna, detained and subsequently sent to prison,” he explained.
He added, “While in prison, more Adara elders were arrested and sent to Kaduna Convict Prison with me.”
According to him, their arrest was based on allegations that they were complicit in the violence that ravaged Adara communities in Kajuru Local Government Area between February and March, 2019, in which the Adara are claiming that armed Fulani herdsmen killed not less than 240 Adara natives and burnt down 12 communities.
“After we spent 109 days in prison, we were told to go. We were discharged and acquitted – that investigation was concluded and that we had no hand in the violence in which our people were the major victims,” he submitted.
Maisamari said that the government of Kaduna State has shown clear bias against the Adara nation and other non Hausa/Fulani ethnic nationalities of Southern Kaduna through what he said were oppressive policies that sought to put down the progress, peace and safety of indigenes of Southern Kaduna and their communities.
He further explained, “He (governor) abrogated the Adara Chiefdom and created Kachia Chiefdom and Kajuru Emirate. Though the Hausa and Fulani make less than 10% of the Adara lands, they have been forced on us to lead our traditional councils.
“He tinkered with the traditional institutions in most parts of Southern Kaduna without consultations and put us at a disadvantage.”
It would be recalled that Governor el-Rufai set up the Commission six months ago, headed by Justice Isa Aliyu, a Justice of the Kaduna State High Court to unravel the persons and groups behind the violence that had been prevalent in those areas and make appropriate recommendations.