Tension is high in Kaduna, the political capital of Northern Nigeria, following the surfacing of a picture and audio in Igbo Language, claiming that some Igbos relocating to the South East ahead of the October 1 deadline given by some northern youths and leaders to Igbos to leave the region were ambushed and killed somewhere in Kaduna State.
A worried Igbo resident in Kaduna told News Express on phone on Friday night: “We are now living in fear and do not know what to expect, especially as a result of this audio, although the State Government has dismissed it and the picture as fake.”
Earlier in the day, Samuel Aruwan, Spokesman to Governor Nasir El-Rufai, had told a news conference that the audio and picture were the handiwork of mischief makers and should be disregarded.
He said: “The attention of Kaduna State Government has been drawn to an inciting picture and audio message stating, that some Igbos relocating to Eastern Nigeria were ambushed and killed in Kaduna State.
“According to the audio being circulated in Igbo Language, the Igbos in question were ambushed in a luxurious bus conveying them to Eastern Nigeria.
“The man behind the mischievous narrative who also claimed to be at the scene, went further to lie, that the attackers slaughtered Igbo, including women and children and that their corpses were burnt along with the luxury bus.
“The so-called eyewitness then appealed to all Igbo residing in Kaduna and rest of the North to relocate to their states of origin. And to also avoid travelling enmass considering mass killings that awaits them in the North.
“It is clear that some dark forces are bent on sowing and creating panic in our communities” the statement said.
Aruwan, who was flanked by some Igbo leaders in the state, added: “As you can see, we are here with the leadership of the Igbo community in Kaduna State.
The story is entirely false and mischievous. The Igbo community in Kaduna is safe, like all our communities. Nobody is being attacked and nobody is relocating in fear.
“Our state is a safe place for all that choose to call it home.
“The government vigorously condemns the use of social media for purposes of incitement, falsehood and to cause distress to citizens” he said.