… As Tiv, Ichen Crisis Escalate To Central Taraba
By Femi Bolaji – Jalingo
Governor Darius Ishaku of Taraba state has directed security agencies to beef up surveillance in communities attacked by militiamen over the weekend.
The directive followed separate attacks on Tunga and Maigoge communities by militiamen in Bali local government area of the state.
The recent onslaught according to residents of Tunga is an escalation of the crisis between the Tiv and Ichen tribes in Donga.
A resident of the community, Idris Baaki who spoke to Vanguard said the attacks were unprovoked, leading to the death of four persons, while two others were injured.
He alleged that the Tiv militia crossed from Donga in Taraba south to launch the attack on their community.
Baaki who lost his elder brother in the Friday attack noted that his community is vulnerable, and urged the government to deploy more security officers to his community.
Vanguard who on Sunday visited Tunga community in Bali local government area of the state observed that women and children have been relocated.
Reacting, President General of the Tiv Cultural and Social Association, Goodman Dahida who also spoke to Vanguard, said majority of Tiv villages have been displaced.
He said allegations against the Tiv is a result of the onslaught currently ongoing in the area.
However, Governor Ishaku who spoke through his deputy, Haruna Manu expressed sadness over the explosion of the crisis into Central Taraba.
According to him, “these attacks came only a few days after the killing, also by a militia group, of a pastor of the CRC-N Church in Mararaba, Donga local government area along with his wife while they were working on their farm.
“Government condemn in very strong terms these barbaric attacks on individuals and communities in the state and warns the attackers to desist forthwith.
“The governor has consequently directed that security be beefed up in communities that are being targeted by the attackers to guarantee safety of lives and property.
“He has also directed security agencies to go after members of these militia gangs responsible to the attacks and killings and ensure that they are brought to book”.
Chairman of Bali LGA, Musa Mahmud who also spoke to Vanguard said he has setup an 11 man peace and conflict resolution committee headed by the Vice Chairman, Mathias Dakka.
The committee according to him has swung into action to curtail future occurrence.