Sunday, March 18, 2012

Norma's Letter from Jos: 15 March 2012 - After the attack on St. Finbar's

Vegetable orders
Thursday, March 15, 2012
From: Norma,  Zamani Farms

Hello customers,

As you can imagine, we have had an extremely stressful week here in Jos after the Sunday suicide bomb blast at one of the biggest Catholic churches in Jos. Immediately this happened, reprisal attacks began in various parts of the city, and in some form or another they are still continuing. Gangs of angry youth attacked a Muslim settlement close to the church, and killed some farmers who were irrigating their crops and some achaba operators who were passing on the road and who were totally unaware of what had happened.  Since Sunday, Christian youth gangs have been engaged in the indiscriminate killing of Muslims who find themselves in certain areas, and Muslim youths have protested against the killing of several motorcycle taxi operators, and have also been killing Christians who venture into Muslim areas. No one knows the total of those killed, but they are many, and every day we hear more stories of killings. So we are back to the troubles in Jos, and of course life here has been very difficult and stressful.

People are afraid to move around freely, most shops and markets are not functioning normally, and many people are not going to work.

It was with some difficulty that we managed to put your orders together for today's delivery but we finally did so, and as I write Audu is on his way to Abuja with your veggies. We hope he will arrive safely and you will get your produce in good condition.

On the farm, the situation is better than in Jos town. Our workers are full of generalised tension, and there have been a couple of villages attacked in the Riyom area, but generally things in the rural areas are not so violent and most people are going about their lives, although they are fearful of traveling far from their homes. As a result most markets are hardly functioning and traders are not moving foodstuffs into Jos town.

Throughout all of this we have been trying to concentrate on doing some work. Our crops can't afford to be left without water or care, so we have to do what we can to keep them going. We have been planting new items, and as you can see from the order form, some new things are available for next week.

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