Following the presidential order to apprehend those behind the killing of no fewer than 190 people in Barkin Ladi, Bokkos and Mangu Local Government Areas, LGAs, of Plateau State, the Nigeria Police Force has deployed personnel and equipment for a special operation in troubled areas.
Assistant Inspector General of Police, AIG, in charge of Zone 4, Eyibio Ebong, who briefed the personnel at the Police Headquarters in Jos, yesterday, urged them to focus on the task at hand.
Meanwhile, the Senate also summoned heads of security agencies, blaming the incident on intelligence failure.
Those ordered to appear before it include the Chief of Defence Staff, General Christopher Musa, Chief of Army Staff, Gen Taoreed Lagbaja, Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Hasan Abubakar and Inspector General of Police, Kayode Egbetokun.
Others are the Director General of National Intelligence Agency, Ahmed Rufai Abubakar, and Director General of Department of State Services, Yusuf Bichi and National Security Adviser, Nuhu Ribadu.
The resolution of the Senate was sequel to the adoption of a motion moved by Senator Diket Plang, APC, Plateau Central, during plenary.
He lamented the incessant attacks in the state, stating the need for a national security summit.
In a related development, a former governor of Plateau State, Jonah Jang, said those behind the killings want to wipe out the natives and take over their land.
He lamented that past presidential directives to go after perpetrators of such killings were not fruitful.
Jang, who said this in a statement by his Media Consultant, Clinton Garuba, identified state police as the only solution to the recurring violence.
His words: “This dastardly act has once again tampered with the peace of our dear state as it was orchestrated by people who are hell-bent on ensuring that the ordinary Plateau man does not enjoy the serenity God through nature has bestowed on him. Choosing to murder harmless villagers in their homes as they prepared to celebrate the yuletide is the most horrendous wickedness that anyone could imagine.
“None of the hundreds of our people who lost their lives in the Christmas eve attack by marauding terrorists envisaged that their lives would be cut short in such a gruesome manner. Villagers in Bokkos, Barkin Ladi, Bassa, Riyom and Mangu LGAs have continued to bear the brunt of terrorists who seem to have sworn to dispossess them of their heritage at all costs. That these killers are out on a cleansing agenda and plan to take over the lands of the people they try to wipe out is no longer hidden.
“As painful as these killings are, equally hard and painstaking efforts must be made to put an end to them to restore Plateau to its known peaceful atmosphere which made it home to many people, even in decades past. While we agree with the President that the culprits must be apprehended and made to face prosecution, we must note that these directives have been issued repeatedly. Yet, neither arrests nor prosecutions have been made in the past.
“It is therefore pertinent that at this point, there is the need to attend to the call for state police as part of measures for boosting security, ensuring early response in crises and confronting the challenges of insecurity headlong. A situation where state governors have no powers to immediately deploy personnel to quell attacks and confront marauding terrorists is worrisome. The killings are getting out of hand and the state police option is viable for nipping these massacres in the bud.”
‘Failure Of Nigeria’
On his part, the 2023 presidential candidate of Labour Party, LP, Peter Obi, yesterday, said the killings in Plateau and insecurity in the country were failure of Nigeria and not the security agencies.
Obi spoke with newsmen after he paid a condolence visit to the family of the former Speaker, House of Representatives, Ghali Na’abba, in Kano.
The former governor of Anambra State, who described insecurity in the country as regrettable, said if the leaders do the right thing, maybe security agencies would follow suit and do better”, he said.
“The insecurity and killings in Plateau is the failure of Nigeria, not security agencies. Because if we the leaders are doing the right thing, maybe security agencies will do better.
“For the incident in Plateau, it is regrettable. We shouldn’t live like that. Our country, we are not at war. We should live peacefully and live together.”
On the death of Na’abba and Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, Obi described the pair as great Nigerians who cared for the unity and progress of the country.
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