By Marie-Therese Nanlong
No fewer than 11 persons were, Tuesday night, shot dead by gunmen along Rim in Riyom Local Government Area of Plateau State.
The victims were said to be returning from a weekly village market at Makera by 7:30p.m., when they were shot dead, while four of the traders were injured.
Survivors of the attack said the gunmen, in Army uniforms, attacked them while some passengers were alighting from a car at Diyan Junction.
However, the spokesman of Operation Safe Haven, Captain Adam Umar, said the attackers only impersonated their personnel.
Captain Umar said: “I express my sincere sympathy to the families of those who lost their lives in the unfortunate incident. Our personnel were alerted and they moved in immediately, but before they got there, the attackers had already killed some people and left others with injuries.
“Criminals can go to any length to disguise themselves in the course of carrying out their criminal activities. We have arrested impersonators in military kits and handed them over for prosecution.
“Anyone can wear military uniforms and perpetrate such evil acts. At the moment, there is no arrest but our personnel are trailing the perpetrators. I am very sure we will bring them to book.”
Meanwhile, the victims have been given mass burial and residents are fleeing their homes at Diyan, Gako and other neighbouring communities in the local government.
Spokesman of Plateau State Police Command, Terna Tyopev, confirmed the incident, adding that “investigations into the incident have begun and the DPO is at the scene.
“We are doing a lot. We have mobilised our men, especially in Riyom and the neighbouring communities. We are using uniformed policemen and plainclothes detectives.”
He asked members of the public to avail the Command with useful information, adding that “with good information, we will unravel the mystery.”