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Benue indigenes return with tales of woes from Jos

By Peter Duru

MAKURDI — Following the renewed hostilities in parts of Plateau State, hundreds of Benue indigenes resident in Jos, the state capital, have fled back to their state with tales of woes that has befallen the state and its inhabitants.

The fleeing returnees, who arrived Makurdi in droves, lamented the extent the crisis in Plateau State has degene-rated into, describing the situation in the city as tense and unfortunate.

They regretted that despite the initial action that was taken by the government and law enforcement agencies, not much progress was made in terms of curtailing the crisis, hence the heightened tension and destruction in some parts of Jos.

Eyewitnesses account

One of the returnees, James Terver, who managed to escape with his family of six, described the situation in Jos and other trouble spots in the state as pathetic and heart breaking.

Terver told Vanguard that as at the time he fled the city, the crisis had overwhelmed the security personnel drafted in to curtail it.

He said, “we are lucky to have escaped with our lives, because the fighting took a dangerous dimension on Tuesday night and it was as if the world was coming to an end.”

At the North Bank motor park where scores of the returnees disembarked from vehicles, many were seen nursing injuries sustained in the crisis.

For Onche Egrube who had a fractured arm, it was the grace of God that aided his escape from death. He said that he sustained the injury while fleeing from a gang of armed youths who had chased him around his neighbourhood, lamenting that some of his neighbours were killed by the rampaging mob.

Meanwhile, there are strong indications that the Benue State Government has taken steps to evacuate its indigenes in the troubled city.

Benue govt intervention

Feelers from the Benue State Government House indicated that the state governor, Mr. Gabriel Suswam, has directed the immediate dispatch of some  state-owned vehicles to the crisis-ridden city to evacuate Benue indigenes trapped in the the crisis.

According to a Government House source, who spoke to Vanguard on grounds of anonymity, the mass evacuation has commenced.


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