- Miyetti Allah said herdsmen killed 120 people in Plateau because 300 cows were killed
- The association while condemning the attacks urged the security agencies to be fair to all parties
- They also claimed that those who carried out the attacks must be on revenge mission
UPDATE: Popular online newspaper, Premium Times, has apologised over a false story credited to Miyetti Allah on the mayhem in Plateau state in which over 100 people were killed.
The online newspaper resolved to apologise to Danladi Ciroma, the northcentral leader of the apex cattle breeders’ organisation over the story published on Monday, June 25, which turned out to be false.
Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) has reportedly given reasons why herdsmen attacked mourners in Plateau state, killing over 120 people and causing serious injuries to hundreds others.
The chairman, north central zone of the organisation, Danladi Ciroma, who condemned the attacks was quoted to have claimed the people were killed in retaliation to the killings of about 300 cows belonging to the herdsmen, The Nation reports.
He said: “These attacks are retaliatory. As much as I don’t support the killing of human being, the truth must be told that those who carried out the attacks must be on revenge mission.
“There have been recent reports of cow rustling and destruction of farms between Berom farmers and Fulani herdsmen. The people carrying out these criminal activities are well known to the communities but the communities are hiding them.
“Fulani herdsmen have lost about 300 cows in the last few weeks – 94 cows were rustled by armed Berom youths in Fan village, another 36 cows were killed by Berom youths. In addition to that, 174 cattle were rustled and the criminals disappeared with them to Mangu.
“Since these cows were not found, no one should expect peace in the areas. Even soldiers that went after the criminals to recover the rustled cows were shot by the armed rustlers and eventually escaped with all the cows."
Ciroma said the state governor, Lalong, has done a lot to restore peace in the area but the criminal elements hiding among their people are frustrating these peace efforts. He added that security agencies have tried, but they need to do more by being fair to all parties.
"They should not neglect any report presented by Fulani of Berom because such report can lead to attacks and deaths if not properly handled. Criminals thrive a lot in Berom communities, but when the Fulani, who are always victims of their crime, react with attacks, they blame the government.
“These communities have leaders, why hide the criminals? They should fish out the criminals and hand them over to security agencies to avoid death of innocent ones.
“As it is today, the Berom man cannot go to farm, the Fulani cannot breed his cows in Berom land. This can be stopped if the security agencies do more than what they are currently doing. The attacks will stop as soon as the security agencies stop Berom youths from stealing Fulani cows," he added.
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com had reported that 120 people were 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.
National Day of Mourning for Victims of Violent Killings Across Nigeria | NAIJ.com TV: