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INSECURITY: Gunmen kill 23 persons in fresh Plateau violence, injure six, burn 24 houses

No fewer than 18 persons were killed last night (Tuesday, January 11, 2022) by gunmen suspected to be Fulani herdsmen, at Ancha village in Miango District of Bassa Local Government Area of Plateau State.

Also, five persons were reportedly killed in different attacks at Tyana village in Riyom Local Government Area of the State.

It was gathered that the attack which lasted for close to two hours without intervention by security men, left 18 persons dead, six injured and 24 households with 100 residential homes razed.

National Publicity Secretary, Irigwe Development Association (IDA), Davidson Malison confirmed the killings in a press statement and said the villagers were helpless and hopeless.

“Affirming this, the Rigwe Nation has been visited by yet another deadly and lethal attack by Fulani terrorists as testified by victims that survived in the early hours of 12 midnight of Tuesday January 11, 2022 at Ancha village of Miango District, Rigwe Chiefdom of Bassa LGA, Plateau State,” Malison said in the statement.

“The attack which lasted for over 2 hours (12:00-2:30) undistracted and unchecked led to the killing of eighteen(18) people with six (6) others injured while over 24 households with over 100 residential rooms were razed down, other properties like motor vehicles, motorcycles and harvested food crops were also destroyed with many valuables stolen and carted away.”

Among the dead was a three-month old baby who was roasted  to ashes during the attack, according to Malison who described the act as man’s inhumanity to man.

Malison explained that prior to the Ancha attack, three people were on a motorcycle along Oureedam village of Kwall District were ambushed on Christmas night during which two people were killed instantly while one other sustained gunshot injuries.

“On the eve of New Year (31/12/2021), five people were attacked and ambushed at Twin Hill where one was burnt to death while four others were injured,” Malison further agonised.

“On the 7th of January,2022 a 49 year old Timeh Evi was ambushed and killed at his irrigation farm in Nzhwerenvi and his dead body has not been recovered till date. His motorcycle and Water pump machine were also carted away.

“On the 10th of January 2022, Ancha village witnessed another attack where a man and his wife were ambushed on their way to farm; the man died instantly while the wife was severely injured and is currently receiving treatment at an undisclosed hospital.”

Malison said the Irigwe nation has lost words to convey the state of sadness, broken heartedness and joylessness the entire people has been confined to due to the act of barbarism and callousness that has been done in the land.

“Beyond condemnation and National Leadership frowned at this yet unfortunate development that has again reaffirmed a declaration of war on the innocent Rigwe People by the Militia Men who have incessantly proven it beyond reasonable doubt.

“While it is undisputedbly that the level of attacks meted on the land has further compounded the challenges plaguing the Rigwe Nation,it is worth of note that it has also added to numerous death list the nation has experienced for over two decades.”

He called on security agencies and government at all levels to devise means as well as cultivate the political will to end the spate of carnage being unleashed on the Rigwe people.

“No concrete and tangible efforts have done to corroborate our calls but, we want to reiterate that if we are part of this country and legitimate citizens, then we expect to see a proactive not reactive approach, action not condemnation, arrest not mere investigation and justice not injustice.”

In a separate attacks,  fiver persons were reportedly killed by gunmen suspected to be Fulani herdsmen at Tyana village in Riyom and Bassa Local Government Areas of Plateau State respectively.

The gruesome killings at Tyana village took place on Monday 10 January, 2022 at about 9:30pm, which left Joel Yohanna, aged 27; Daniel Bitrus, 25 and Christopher Ezekiel Mwantiri, 22 death while two persons sustained gunshots injuries.

While the killings at Nzhwerenvi and Ncha villages of Bassa Local Government Area left two persons death and three others sustained gunshots injuries.

President, Berom Youth Moulders’ Association, Solomon Dalyop Mwantiri, Esq confirmed the killings and described it as unfortunate.

He said that the victims were returning from Riyom village when the incident occurred.

Mwantiri explained that the suspects were approaching the community when they sensed strange movement from the bush by the road and said the strangers began to shot at the people and three persons were killed.

Similarly, Irigwe Development Association (IDA) Publicity Secretary, Davidson Malison said a 49 year old Timeh Evi was ambushed and killed on the 7th January, 2022 at his irrigation farm in Nzhwerenvi village.

He expressed dismay that the body has not been recovered as the attackers either made away with the body or dumped it somewhere.

Malison said only traces of his blood was found in the farm and his motorcycle and Water pump machine were also carted away.

He explained further that one Monday Stephen was ambushed and killed on Monday 10 January 2022 on his way to the farm at Ncha village.

His 25 year old wife, Talatu escaped the attack with gunshots injuries and was taken to the hospital for treatment.

He said, “the situation around the axis is still tensed as the marauders have been spotted gathering in an attempt to unleash another terror.”

Plateau State Governor, Simon Bako Lalong expressed deep sadness over another attack in Ancha village of Bassa Local Government which left many dead and properties destroyed.

Lalong said the attack which was carried out on Tuesday night is another sad tale in the unending cycle of violent attacks in the area which has continued despite several measures taken by Government.

He ordered security agencies to ensure that they fish out the attackers at all costs, as bringing such perpetrators to justice is the only way to halt the barbaric killings.

The Governor asked the GOC 3rd Armoured Division and Commander Operation Safe Haven; The Commissioner of Police; Department of State Services; Operation Rainbow and other security organs in the State to utilise intelligence available from survivors and other sources and ensure that the perpetrators of this and other attacks are apprehended and exposed.

While commiserating with the families of those killed and survivors, the Governor directed the Plateau State Emergency Management Agency and the Peace Building Agency to move in and assess the damage as well as offer immediate humanitarian interventions.

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