Many people have been feared killed and others injured in a fresh violence between Jukun and Tiv tribes in Wukari, South of Taraba State.
Several houses were reportedly burnt in the clashes which began last weekend.
Meanwhile, the state Governor, Mr Darius Ishaku has condemned the violence which he attributed to incessant conflict between Jukun and Tiv people in Taraba and Benue states.
According to a statement by the media aide to the governor, the latest occurred in Kente, a border community in Taraba state, resulting from a minor conflict between both ethnic groups.
The governor urged residents of the affected border communities to live together in peace and harmony as frequent conflicts only lead to disruption of economic activities and aggravate poverty and hunger.
Although, the state Police command is yet to comment on the latest communal clash in Taraba state.
But a Jukun community leader, Bako Benjamin, said despite the peace accord reached last week between the two warring communities, “Tiv ethnic militias have continued to launch pockets of attacks on our communities.”
Falana, Jukuns Raise Alarm Over Unreported Killings in Taraba
The Jukuns in Taraba State yesterday raised alarm over a series of killings by gunmen and suspected kidnappers in the southern part of the state within the last few weeks.
Activist lawyer Femi Falana (SAN) and the Junkun Development Association of Nigeria, at a news conference at the Falana and Falana law firm, Adekunle Fajuyi Way, GRA, Ikeja, expressed concern over the killings – many of which they lamented “go unreported”.
The association’s National President, Bako Benjamin, said no fewer than 148 Junkuns abducted from their houses in the last few weeks are still being held in captivity by gunmen.
He said there are other victims, who are Yoruba, Igbo, and other tribes, adding that the association could not give their names because they did not have them.
Benjamin said the situation in Takun communities in southern Taraba State is worse than what is happening in Zamfara State.
“In the past, people get removed from their cars, if you are traveling in a flashy car on the roads and they take to the bush. But today, because people have avoided the roads, they go to houses and removed people from their houses and demanded ransom and sometimes, even after ransom is paid, they still kill them.
“As we speak, one Alhaji Mayo, who runs some filling stations in Takun, he was removed from his house, taken to the bush and they used his phones to call his family and demanded N200 million. They negotiated and after selling a lot of his property, they managed to raise N105 million, which they collected.
“As if that was not enough, they told the wife to drive all the man’s cars to a location. They took all the cars and drove them away. Just yesterday (Saturday), the younger brother called and said they have been impoverished. The man is still with them in the bush in captivity.
“A hotelier, Ahmadu Emmanuel, they wanted to abduct him from his house. He resisted, he was shot dead in cold blood. That was two weeks ago.
“One Sule Audu, a medical doctor, they abducted him too from Takun. They asked for N10 million. After they mobilized and tried and sourced the money and delivered, they switched off their phones. Another group used another phone to call the family and said, ‘where is the money?’. They said ‘we’ve given you the money’ and they said they must have given it to another group. Look, your man is with us, better go and look for another N10 million to secure his release. The daughter, who is also a doctor, just collapsed and she is still in a coma as we speak.”
He listed other people abducted by from their homes as including one lawyer, Yagura Lena, who still being held after a ransom was paid; one Joy Ubadene, who is still in captivity and a member of the state assembly, Osia Aiyegbe, who was killed after a ransom was paid.
“We are in deep trouble, far worse from what is happening in Zamfara. Our people no longer travel home and those at home have started leaving to join their families in Lagos. Except something is done urgently, the Jukun communities in Taraba would become extinct,” he said.
Benjamin said commercial activities have grounded to a halt throughout Taraba.
Benjamin and Falana urged state governors, together with the president, to take charge of the situation by setting up appropriate policing agencies.
He lamented that state governors have abdicated their responsibility to the President, adding that is why the impression is being given as if what the country has is a federal police force.
Falana said the 1999 Constitution (as amended) envisaged that police powers shall be managed by the president and the governors.
“Between 2003 and now, the National Assembly has established the Civil Defence Corps with powers to bear arms. In addition, the Prison Service, Customs, Immigration, and others are also allowed to bear arms whereas Section 214 of the Constitution says, there shall be only one police force in Nigeria.
“So if the Federal Government sets up forces and other agencies that can bear arms, why are state governors shying away?” he asked.
He noted that the President once expressed the fear that a state that cannot pay salaries cannot be allowed to arm young men and women.
He contended that if the security of the country must be ensured, the salaries and allowances of security personnel for every state should be deducted from the source so that the question of not being paid would not arise.
Air Strikes Killing Innocent Villagers, Say Zamfara Emirs, Berates Minister
Zamfara Council of Chiefs on Thursday said many innocent villagers had been killed in misdirected air strikes by the military in the ongoing fight against bandits in the state.
The News Agency of Nigeria reported that the Emir of Bungudu, Alhaji Hassan Attahiru made the disclosure at the end of an emergency meeting of the council, on Thursday in Gusau, the state capital.
He said, “The council noted that airstrikes undertaken by the military did not hit the main camps of the bandits.
“Reports from Mutu in the Gusau and Tsafe Local Government Area, Tangaram in the Anka LGA and Dumburum in the Zurmi LGA, among others, indicated that the areas shelled were not the actual hideouts of the bandits and the victims were innocent civilians.”
The council said efforts to end banditry in the state would only be achieved “if the main camps of the bandits are taken over and security personnel stationed there for a considerable period of time.
“This will deprive the bandits territory, mobility and supply routes, thus securing all surrounding areas.”
On the recent allegation of connivance with bandits by some traditional rulers made by Defence Minister, Mansur Dan’Ali, the council challenged the minister to immediately name the traditional rulers or withdraw the statement.
“Failure to do this will make his statement false and an attempt to tarnish the image of the traditional rulers and thereby making them scapegoats for the inability of the military and other security forces to end the scourge.”
The council said the traditional rulers had always cooperated with government and security agencies in providing information on location, routes and names of persons engaged in such criminal activities.
“Unfortunately, the military and other security agencies have failed to be on top of the situation.
“We will not shield anyone and we will want any suspect however highly placed to be arrested and prosecuted, ” the council said.
NAN reports that the meeting, chaired by council Chairman and Emir of Anka, Alhaji Ahmad Muhammad, was attended by all the emirs in the state.
UTME: Prof Arrested in Abuja for Aiding Daughter to Cheat
A self-acclaimed professor, identified only as Jide, has been arrested by operatives of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, after he was caught assisting his daughter during the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination in the Jabi area of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board confirmed Jide’s arrest on Thursday, which was the first day of the UTME, noting that the man sneaked into a Computer-Based Test centre in Jabi but he was later arrested by operatives and was now in custody.
Our correspondent learnt that Jide was arrested at the Brix Academy CBT Centre in Jabi while the UTME was on, trying to assist his daughter in the examination.
The JAMB Head of Information and Public Affairs, Dr Fabian Benjamin, in an interview with our correspondent, said the NSCDC would go on with Jide’s prosecution at the end of its investigations.
He said, “In Brix Academy in Jabi, a man penetrated the system, broke all security barriers, went into the examination hall and assisted his daughter. When arrested, he claimed to be a professor and also the owner of a non-governmental organisation. He has been picked up and he is with the security operatives. We believe that in no distant time, he will be prosecuted.
“He was not able to carry out his nefarious activity. He claimed to be a professor from a university outside the country.”
Benjamin noted that the outing for the UTME on Thursday was “successful and impressive,” adding that despite a few challenges in some centres, the board believed that the examination would get better.
A total of 1,855,643 candidates would be taking the UTME which would run till Monday.
Cover5 months ago
Ganduje Donates N10 Million to EFCC, ICPC for Anti-Corruption Event
Cover5 months ago
Buhari Approves New Salary Package for Police Officers
Cover3 months ago
Nigeria Still as Corrupt as Before – Transparency International
Entertainment5 months ago
PHOTOS: Inside Abuja Biggest Christmas Carol Organized By Pinnacle Communications Ltd.
News5 months ago
President Buhari To Attend Peace Forum In France
Politics6 months ago
Saraki Reshuffles Senate Committees, Axes Buhari’s Loyalist
Foreign5 months ago
Saudi Crown Prince Ordered Khashogghi’s Murder – CIA
Cover5 months ago
Eid-El Maulud: FG Declares Tuesday Public Holiday