Herders surrender 30 guns to police lGov sacks LG chair over killings
EU expresses concern
Again, gunmen believed to be herdsmen have killed 25 people and razed many houses in a fresh attack on Dundu village in Irigwe Chiefdom of Bassa Local Government Area of Plateau State.
This came as some herdsmen have surrendered 30 different guns illegally acquired to the police in Niger State.
A Youth Leader of Irigwe chiefdom, Mr. Auta Danjuma, confirmed that the attack occurred on Monday night.
Danjuma said 25 people, mostly women and children, were killed while several others sustained injuries.
He said: “Twenty-five people lost their lives in a fresh attack on Dundu village of Kwall District of Bassa Local Government Area. The incident occurred just as the Irigwe community had planned a mass burial for four of the five earlier killed in a similar attack on Nzhauvo village.
“When we reacted to a claim by the Miyetti Allah group in January of missing cattle, we told you it was a ploy to justify another round of killings. True to this, the Fulani militia, which the Federal Government has refused to brand a terrorist organisation to the dismay of Nigerians, have continued to visit our villages with orchestrated and unwarranted carnage.
“Today, we buried four from an attack on Nzharuvo, which left five, mostly children dead and one injured, but here is a breakdown of the various serial attacks we have suffered.”
The state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP Mathias Terna, confirmed the attack in Jos.
He said the Commissioner of Police in the state, Mr Adie Undie, had directed the officer in charge of operations to mobilise to the scene of the crime.
“Twenty-five persons were on Monday night killed in an attack in Dundu community of Bassa Local Government Area.
“Two persons were severely injured and many houses burnt to ashes.
“As such, the Commissioner of Police has directed the DCP Taiwo Jebiyisu, Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of Department of Operations, to visit the scene for an on-the-spot assessment.
“Armed policemen have also been deployed to the area to contain any further break down of law and order,” he said.
It was learnt that the people had gathered at the old Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH) mortuary to convey corpses of the four victims of earlier attack when news of the latest one broke.
The attack occurred about 7:30p.m. on Monday.
The people wore black attire as they made a procession in Jos while conveying the four corpses.
The 25 victims of Monday’s attack have been buried in a mass grave.
The attack drew condemnations from individuals and groups such as the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Plateau G-17 Youth Group, etc.
Governor Simon Lalong also gave a marching order to the security agents to “immediately” arrest and prosecute the criminals who perpetrated the killings in Bassa and Bokkos local government areas.
Lalong said his administration would not condone the activities of hoodlums taking advantage of conflicts among citizens to perpetrate killings and destruction of property in the name of ethnic crisis.
The governor said in a statement issued by the Commissioner for Information and Communication, Hon. Yakubu Dati, that “Plateau State believes that our differences are better resolved by sitting together to address our differences rather than taking arms against one another.”
Also, Lalong has sacked Mr. Simon Angyol, the Management Committee Chairman of Bokkos Local Government Area of the state over incessant killings in the locality.
Lalong made this in communication forwarded to the State’s House of Assembly and was read at Tuesday’s plenary by its Speaker, Mr. Peter Azi.
“Following certain unpleasant development in the management of Bokkos local government council, I wish to seek approval for the removal of Mr. Simon Angyol as Management Committee Chairman of the Council.
“I also wish to seek your approval to appoint Mr Tamai Simon as the new Management Committee Chairman of the Council,” he stated.
Members of House, in a voice vote, approved the removal of Angyol and the subsequent appointment of Simon.
Meanwhile, the Director-General of Niger State Department of Nomadic Affairs, Alhaji Abdullahi Babayo, said in Minna yesterday that the herdsmen surrendered the arms following peace and reconciliation initiated by the department to enhance peaceful coexistence in the state.
Babayo said the department had already embarked on aggressive sensitisation campaign on the dangers of cattle rustling.
He said: “We have reached out to Islamic clerics, specifically to teach us what our religion said about stealing and killing innocent souls and the punishment there after.”
The DG explained that the approach from religious point of view had greatly assisted in mobilising those who were doing illegal business to have a rethink.
Babayo said that all efforts were geared toward mobilising Fulani herdsmen to embrace western and Islamic education to enable them to contribute to the socio-economic and political development of the state.
He added: “We are doing everything possible to stop clashes between herdsmen and farmers over land encroachment during grazing, cattle rustling or other crimes in the state.”
The European Union (EU) Heads of Mission has expressed concern over what it described as escalating and disturbing killings in the conflict involving herdsmen and farmers in Nigeria.
A statement in Abuja by the Media Officer to the EU delegation to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Mr. Modestus Chukwulaka, urged the Nigerian government to bring perpetrators of violence of any kind to book
“As a first step, the perpetrators of violence must be brought to justice. The EU confirms its full support to the Nigerian government and people in their fight against violence in all its forms.
“The EU also expresses its condolences and sympathy to the families of those killed and injured,” the statement said.
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