Plateau: Over 30 killed, houses burnt as gunmen defy curfew

Over 30 persons were killed and several houses destroyed, yesterday, in the Kwahaslalek and the surrounding communities, as gunmen defied the 24-hour curfew imposed on Mangu Local Government Area by the Plateau State government, on Tuesday.

Recall that Governor Caleb Mutfwang had declared a 24-hour curfew in Mangu, following the deteriorating security situation in the area, stressing that only persons on essential duties were allowed to move within the local government until further notice.
However, despite the curfew, gunmen stormed Kwahaslalek and its environs, killing more man 30 persons and destroying several houses and worship centres.

At the time of this report, the Sabon Layi area was the worst affected, as houses, worship centres and business premises were been razed, as citizens accused soldiers of aiding the carnage.

Though no information official confirmation, at the time of this report, a survivor, Hosea Ibrahim, said the skirmish at Mangu town was a decoy for the attack on the Kwahaslalek Community, not far from the National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, permanent orientation camp at Jakatai, Mangu LGA.

According to him: “What happened at Sabon Gari and Mangu, on Tuesday, was just a distraction, so that people’s attention will be shifted away from the villages. For the second time, my village, Kwahaslalek (behind NYSC camp), was attacked at about 12.30am, leaving over 30 people, mostly women and children, dead, as houses were burnt and some persons left with gunshot wounds.
“At about midnight there was sporadic gunshots and women ran to one compound for safety. Unfortunately, the terrorists went there and killed them, while the men were keeping vigil outside the community. The victims were killed at a community leader’s house, where they ran for refuge. The Mairana, Kinat and other communities in Mangu Halle District, and those on the borders of Mangu and Barkin Ladi Local government areas are deserted now.”

However, a security personnel who preferred anonymity said, “Mangu town is calm but we were called in the early hours of today (yesterday) about a development around the communities close to the NYSC camp. Our people are there but the deed had been done. A lot of people were killed. The victims are mostly women and children. They had run to hide there because they thought the place was far and the attackers would not go there. But the attackers were conveyed in a vehicle and dropped there before they attacked.”

Other security personnel who also preferred anonymity confirmed the alleged complicity of some of his colleagues saying, “We tried to enter the communities at about 10 am but we could not because of the fire power. Some of us had to confront some of our colleagues from a sister agency because of the perceived bias attitude from them. We are security personnel, we have to keep sentiment aside and help where we can but when one arm gives the impression of bias, how do we solve the people?”

Meanwhile, the Convener, the Initiative for a Better and Brighter Nigeria, IBBN, Prophet Isa El-Buba has called for an urgent action against insecurity saying, “Security developments in Nigeria have remained alarming and worrying.”


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