Famine looms as killings spread to Taraba, Nasarawa

Posted by News Express | 8 January 2018 | 2,001 times

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•Pastoral herdsmen

In what appears a spillover of the Fulani herdsmen and farmers clash in Benue at the weekend, another three persons were reportedly killed in Abagu village of Baure district in Awe Local Government Area of Nasarawa State.

And with the displacement of farmers, there is the likelihood of famine in the areas affected by serial herders/farmers’ clashes.

This is fear is coming as herders in Taraba State are accusing both the federal and state governments of conspiracy in the alleged killing of scores of their kinsmen by some Bachama and Nyandang militia group. Speaking to journalists on the Nasarawa killings, Interim Management Committee (IMC) Chairman in Awe Local Government Area of the state, Hudu Tafida, said six suspected killers were arrested in connection with the incident, and were presently assisting the police with useful information.

Tafi da expressed shock at the manner people take laws into their hands, and warned them to desist from doing so or face the full wrath of the law. He expressed the fear that if the crisis is not properly addressed, it would escalate and affect the farming activities in the area and cause food shortage in the state.

This, he noted, is because all those displaced persons were predominantly farmers. The IMC chairman who commended President Muhammadu Buhari and Governor Umaru Al-Makura for prompt restoration of peace and order to the area, appealed for more deployment of security personnel to the area.

“I am calling on government at all levels to come to our aid, especially with more security personnel in Awe in order to tackle the security challenges facing our people.

“As I am talking to you now, Tiv farmers in Awe local government area are taking refuge in Awe town as their houses were burnt and property looted by the attackers.” Those arrested include Mr. Danlami Audu, James Dabir, Bitrus Dachi, Tanko David, Danjuma Biabu and Mark Fidelis.

MACBAN takes stand

Meanwhile, Miyyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association (MACBAN) has vowed to take definite stand over alleged killings of their kinsmen in four villages of Lau local government of Taraba State if the Federal Government failed to act fast.

Suspected Bachama and Nyandang militia from Adamawa State, had on Friday, reportedly crossed over and launched attacks on Babagasa, Donadda and Katibu villages of three Fulani communities in Lau LGA which share boundary with Adamawa, resulting in loss of lives.

Speaking to newsmen, the North-east zonal chairman of the association, Mafi ndi Umaru Danburam, claimed scores of women and children, mostly Fulani, were killed. “Unfortunately, neither the state nor federal government has made any statement over the heinous attack. The ethnic armed militia came to the villages brandishing guns and said their cows were stolen and started shooting and setting houses ablaze,” he said. Danburam expressed deep worry over the killings and vowed that, “Miyetti Allah and other Fulani groups are convening a stakeholders’ meeting to take a definite stand on this act of wickedness against our members.”

Also corroborating the group’s position, the state chairman of MACBAN, Sahabi Mahmoud Tukur alleged complicity, saying, “As I am talking to you now, over 25 people were killed mostly the aged, women and children, including a one-year-old boy who was stabbed with arrow.

“This latest attack was coordinated to systematically wipe out the Fulani through ethnic cleansing. For God sake, what justification do they have by attacking innocent people in Taraba? They had their crisis in Adamawa, but imagine the crossover and how they were assisted by Yandangs? Not only that, the State Government has kept mute 24 hours after the attacks,” he fumed.

No arrest – Police

Meanwhile, police spokesman, ASP David Misal, said no arrest has so far been made. “We are yet to get details and information that could help in tracking down the fleeing attackers. We warn people not to take laws into their hands, security operatives are on top of the situation,” Misal warned.

The police insisted that casualty figure remained at four, with five injured while relations and other sources put figure of the dead victims at 24. (Blueprint)

Source: News Express

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