HUNDREDS KILLED IN PLATEAU BY SUSPECTED FULANI HERDSMEN
Two hundred persons were allegedly killed in Gashish and Ropp Districts of Plateau State on Sunday, during an attack that were carried out on about 11 communities by suspected Fulani herdsmen. The attack was said to have been launched at Xland, Gindin Akwati, Ruku, Nghar, Kura Falls and Kakuruk all in Gashish District. The communities were completely sacked by the assailants, reports said.
Other areas affected by the attack included Rakok, Kok and Razat all in Ropp District.
The Chairman, Public Accounts and Petition Committee in Plateau State House of Assembly representing Barkin Ladi, Peter Gyendeng, in an interview said the attack was “a declaration of war” on his constituency.
He claimed that “mercenaries” have been hired to come and kill people in Barkin Ladi LGA.
Gyendeng said, “As a matter of fact, the casualty rate is in hundreds; it is more than 100. In one place, it is above 51; in another, over 32 and yet in another area, it is same. For now, based on what we have on ground and the corpses that we have been receiving, it is probably over 200 casualties. “Altogether, about 11 villages were attacked and our people are there now trying to ascertain the number of deaths. The casualty rate is above 200 and counting (of the corpses) is still going on. This is war, it is a declaration of war on my people. War has been declared on Barkin Ladi LGA completely. There are mercenaries that have been hired to come and kill people in Barkin Ladi LGA. The killing started around 11:00 pm last (Saturday) night till this (Sunday) morning. And the killing still continues.”
The spokesperson of the Plateau State Police Command, Matthias Tyopev, an Assistant Superintendent of Police, also confirmed the killings. Subsequently, the Plateau State Government has imposed a dusk-to-dawn curfew on Riyom, Barkin Ladi and Jos South Local Government Areas. The decision, according to the government, was to avert further breakdown of law and order. A terse statement issued on Sunday by the Secretary to the State Government, Rufus Bature, said the movement was restricted from 6:00 pm to 6:00 am, except for those on essential duties.
An eye-witness, Masara Kim, who narrowly escaped being killed in an ambush while returning from a funeral service near Kura Falls, explained: “The attack occurred a few metres away from a military checkpoint in Kafi Abu village. The attackers opened fire on the convoy of sympathizers and bullets hit a vehicle which I was travelling in, injuring one person. “At least four other travellers were critically wounded in different other vehicles. In one vehicle, the driver and another woman were shot in their legs. Another driver carrying over five passengers was shot in the arm, resulting in the car crashing. “All on board fled into the bushes amid heavy gunfire. The attackers by their looks, were herdsmen.”