Kaduna: Adara people reject newly created chiefdoms

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From Noah Ebije, Kaduna

The Adara people of Kachia and Kajuru Local Government Areas of Kaduna have rejected new chiefdoms created for them by governor Nasir El-Rufai, alleging that the original chiefdom was split to belittle them and take over the chunks of their ancestral land.

They said splitting of their chiefdom implied that the Adara will neither have a first class chiefdom in Kachia, nor in Kajuru Local Government Area of the state.

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Addressing a press conference on Tuesday, the National President, Adara Development Association (ADA), Mr Awemi Dio Maisamari, pointed out that the First Class Adara Chiefdom was partitioned and placed Adara community in two Chiefdoms; Adara people in Kachia LGA were given a new Kachia Chiefdom to be ruled by Agom Kachia, adding that the almost 100 per cent Adara Christians in Kajuru LGA were unilaterally forced under a very tiny Kajuru Emirate in which Christians make up more than 95 per cent of the population.

‘Adara nation has decided and our Association has mobilised and sensitised its members to reject, boycott and disregard the Chiefdoms being created to replace our unjustifiably scrapped First Class Adara Chiefdom.

‘It is totally unacceptable for our community to be forcefully annexed to and ruled by Chiefdoms and puppets we never asked for.

‘We are not a conquered territory or colony that can be pushed here and there under duress or without our prior and informed consent. A government that does so should not pretend to be democratic and the people who tolerate and endure such treatment are not real citizens. We unconditionally demand democratic governance and real citizenship.

‘Our community has unanimously resolved to declare any groups or individuals who voluntarily and intentionally violate the rejection and boycott of the new Chiefdoms as traitors and saboteurs of Adara nation.

‘So far, Adara Development Association has found the promoters of the activities of the so called Adara Youth Empowerment Initiative (NGO), those who have applied for positions in the new chiefdoms and the District Heads of Kufana and Bishini to be violating the community resolution.

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‘Out of ignorance, selfishness, greed, fear or mere survival instinct they have chosen to sacrifice legitimate group interests. Like South African blacks who supported the oppressive apartheid system that enslaved them, they deserve our harsh condemnation.

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‘We however sympathise with the Adara Village Heads who were compelled to issue a press statement in support of the offensive government actions in Adara community.

‘We strongly condemn the cowardly traitors and saboteurs who are stage-managing the supporting injustice. They will never succeed in sabotaging the popular demand of Adara nation for one indivisible Adara Chiefdom.

‘Fourteen aggrieved Southern Kaduna communities (including Adara community) have sued the Kaduna state government over the Kaduna State Traditional Institution Law, 2021. The law has flagrantly reversed progressive changes, diminished the status, enforced uniformity and foreclosed any changes in non-Muslim traditional institutions in Kaduna State.

‘The suit is challenging the constitutionality of the law and the right of the State Government to legislate in a manner that derogates on the cultural rights of our communities and urging the court to nullify the Kaduna State Traditional Institutions Law, 2012.

‘We are confident that necessary and timely judicial intervention can still save Kaduna State citizens from political and legislative excesses inflicted on us.

‘Legitimate community leaders of Adara nation will continue to leave the door open for engagement and amicable resolution of its grievances with government. Where we continue to be rebuffed, the community will also continue to expose the prejudice, plots, illegalities and injustice being perpetrated on our innocent communities.

‘Sustained resistance to injustice in our bleak circumstances is a moral obligation and if necessary, a legacy we are determined to hand over to future generations.

‘We remain resolute in demanding for and ensuring Adara cultural survival, group rights and dignity particularly in our only homeland on earth.

‘As a law abiding community, we sought redress for our grievances at a court of competent jurisdiction in January, 2019. However, the hearing of the case is yet to commence till date,’ Maisamari said.

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