Nasir el-Rufai, governor of Kaduna, says the state government has spent about N16 billion on security in the last five years.
According to NAN, el-Rufai spoke at a meeting with the state council of emirs and chiefs on Tuesday.
The high level of insecurity in Kaduna has been a source of concern to the government and residents. In July, at least 50 people were killed in different communities across southern Kaduna alone.
The governor said the money was used to support security agencies and acquire technology and infrastructure to fight insecurity in the state.
He said the money would have gone into developmental projects “if the people had chosen to live in peace”.
El-Rufai said part of the “misleading narrative” on the current crisis in southern Kaduna is “the false claims of genocide and land grabbing”.
According to el-Rufai, the claim has no basis.
“As governor, I authorise any traditional ruler to please tell the media about any inch of land within their domain that has been forcibly grabbed or illegally occupied by anybody or group and I assure you that security agencies will be there the next day to flush them out,” he said.
“But as far as I know – and I receive security reports every morning, there is no such incidence that the state government is aware of.
“But we don’t know everything, you know more than us because you are closer to the communities, so please report where indigenous people have been displaced by bandits or anyone else.”
El-Rufai said the government will continue to support security agencies to restore calm in the affected communities.
He, therefore, called on all the traditional rulers to help persuade people to choose to live peacefully and address misleading narratives on current communal conflicts in parts of the state.
“To make this sustainable, we call on the traditional institution to collaborate with the security agencies to expose and report criminals in their communities,” he said.
The governor added that a new law would be enacted to protect the traditional institution and ensure that before any emirate or chiefdom is created, “it will pass through the state assembly where the representative of the people will have the opportunity to vote and support it before it is done.”