- Armed men have reportedly killed 120 people in Plateau state
- The people are said to be returning from a funeral when they were attacked
- Though the police claimed only 11 lives was lost, it was reported that the attack lasted several hours
About 120 people are reported to have been killed in an attack by armed men in Plateau state on Saturday, June 23. The pastor in charge of Church of Christ In Nations (COCIN) Regional Church Council (RCC) Rop in Barkin Ladi local government area made this claim.
The cleric said the people were returning from a funeral service when they were attacked by suspected herdsmen.
Premium Times reports that the police confirmed the attack but said only 11 persons died.
The cleric, Pam Chollom, said the attack on Saturday lasted for several hours.
“Fulani people attacked our members who attended the burial of the father to one of our clergy Baba Jakawa, at Gidin Akwati, Gashis district. Late Jakawa was aged over 80 years, a committed member of COCIN, so his burial attracted many sympathisers.”
“The armed Fulanis ambushed the sympathisers on their way back from the burial, attacked and killed 34 persons from Nekan village, 39 others from Kufang, and 47 people from Ruku village.
“As we speak with you, many others are still missing in the bushes,” he said.
He added that “the sad incident started at about 1:00pm. in the afternoon, and lasted still about 8.00pm. yesterday (Saturday).
“We informed members of the Special Task Force (STF) on Jos crisis. They went to one of the villages, but the attackers had committed the havoc and left,” Chollom said.
The incident was said to have been confirmed by the spokesman of the STF, also known as “Operation Safe Heaven,” Umar Adams who however, could not ascertain the casualty.
“I’m speaking with you from one the scenes of the incident. Our men were able to repel the attackers, made some arrest, though lives were lost. But at the moment, I cannot tell you exact number of the deaths.”
“Our men in Barkin Ladi responded promptly to the incident, because they heard sounds of the gun shots, and moved to the direction.
“On reaching there, there was another similar incident in another village, some of them were redeployed to the affected area. We have been able to arrest the situation, it is now calm.”
The news outlet reports that on its part, the Nigeria Police Force, through its spokesperson in Plateau, Terna Tyopev, told journalists in Jos that 11 people died from the attack.
However, a statement by the commissioner for information and communication Yakubu Dati, said the government regrets the incident.
“The Plateau state government wishes to commiserate with citizens of the state especially, Xland, Gindin Akwati communities of Barkin Ladi local government, over unfortunate recent attacks,” Mr Dati said.
“Government is deeply pained that despite concerted efforts which had led to the restoration of relative peace across the state, some unpatriotic elements are bent on disrupting the gains so far made.
“We, however, appeal to citizens not to take laws into their hands and cooperate with security agencies to prevent further break down of law and order as they track perpetrators of the evil act.”
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com had reported that the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) confirmed that three persons were killed in a fresh attack carried out by bandits on a community identified as Kura Falls, Gashish district in the Barkin Ladi local government Area of Plateau state.
National Day of Mourning for Victims of Violent Killings Across Nigeria | NAIJ.com TV: