13 die in fresh Plateau violence

No fewer than 13 people were murdered last weekend when violence broke out at Tina Junction, Angwan Rukuba and Kagu village in Regizah, Naraguta community of Jos North Local Government Area of Plateau State. District head, Regizah of Naraguta community, Mr Yakubu Bala Shishok, who lost two persons from his household, said he escaped death narrowly when his house was set on fire by the attackers.

Shishok said nine persons were killed in his family compound; his 82-year-old mother escaped, while three persons were killed at Baptist Church.

He said: “It was last week Friday at about 7 p.m. that we heard heavy gunshots in our communities after the killing of 13 persons at Rukuba Road in Gada Biyu.

“We all went into our houses and, in the night, some people came and set my house on fire and killed my 11-year-old boy, Shishok, and a Yoruba man who lived in the compound. They thought I was the one.

“Immediately, they left, while I was hiding inside the ceiling, I heard their voices but I don’t know who they were. My two wives managed to get out of the house inside the smoke and I jumped from the ceiling and had a dislocation.

“Presently, I am with security operatives but I lost everything in my house. I am passing through pain, there is still tension in the community as we speak now.”

Meanwhile, Governor Simon Lalong has ordered heads of security agencies in the state to step up efforts to stop the violence and fish out perpetrators. In a statement signed by his Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mr Mark Longyen, the governor summoned security chiefs at Government House, Jos, with a view to stopping the unrest and finding lasting solutions to the killings.

The meeting had in attendance the state commissioner of police, Mr. Undie Adie, commander of the Special Task, Mr Augustine Agundu, director of the State Security Council, Mr Babagana Bulama, and commander of Operation Rainbow, Mr Steve Guar.

While the government and security agencies are currently working round the clock to ensure an immediate return to normalcy, Lalong has urged residents of the state capital to beware of the circulation of fake news on the social media by crisis merchants, aimed at escalating the crisis and to always cross-check every piece of information they got.

The governor also implored the people of the state to be security-conscious and carefully watch activities and movement of suspicions persons within their environment with a view to promptly reporting same to security agents for decisive action.

The governor charged security agencies to show professionalism in the course of their duty and observe the rules of engagement in their efforts to maintain law and order.

Sun

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