By John Mkom
Jalingo—Ten people were reported killed yesterday, while three others were missing in a clash between Fulani herdsmen and Tiv farmers at Serking Gudu village in Ibbi local government of Taraba State.
The crisis started when the corpse of a Fulani man was found in the bush between Serking Gudu and Dooshima villages of Ibbi local government area of Taraba State.
The Fulani man was declared missing by his relations within the village as the matter was reported to the Nigerian Army who were posted in the area to control the perennial communal crisis within the area.
The chairman, Ibbi local government chapter of Tiv culture and social organisation, Mr. Mkavga Orhembaga, explained that when the Army was informed about the missing Fulani man, all the people within the area went out in his search.
Mkavga also stated that the body of the Fulani man was found in the bush by the Army, accompanied by some Fulani men.
“When they found the body of the Fulani man, his brothers and other Fulani men went angry with the Tiv people within the area.
“In the afternoon when people were in their farms, the Fulanis went after the Tiv people in their farms, killing eight of them.
“Another person suspected to be a teacher who came from Plateau to teach in one of the primary schools within the village was also killed by the Fulani,” Mkavga said.
Mkavga further stated that three Tiv persons were still missing, adding that it had become difficult to ascertain whether they were still alive since armed Fulani herdsmen had taken over the area.
He said: “I can’t tell if these people are dead or alive because there is no way to go out and look for them. As it is, I have directed that all my people should remain at home, nobody should go to farm until security is restored in the area.”
Vanguard gathered that the village had become a ghost town as the villagers are said to be parking out for fear of further attacks.
The area commander of Wukari police area command was also seen within the area in company of regular police and mobile policemen to control the crisis.
The Police Public Relations Officer, Taraba State command, ASP Joseph Kwaji, did not pick his call nor reply the message sent to his phone for his comments on the development.
It will be recalled that in his efforts to end communal crisis in Taraba State, Governor Darius Ishaku recently inaugurated a committee to return internally displaced persons to their homes.
The governor also mandated the traditional rulers to keep watch on their subjects to avoid recurrence of communal crisis across the local government areas in the state.