…begs Gov. Sule for protection
By David Odama, Lafia
President of Tiv Youth Organization in Nasarawa state, Barr. Barnabas Zayol has cried out over the incessant attacks on Tiv communities in Nasarawa state that has claimed the lives of scores, injured many more, with over 50,000 displaced.
It would be recalled that several Tiv communities in Nasarawa have come under numerous attacks by suspected Fulani herders, especially last Saturday where women and children were massacred by gunmen in Doma and other settlements in the state.
The affected communities are Dooshima, Antsa, Dooka, Angwan Yara, Ikyayior, Targema, Tse Tor, Chia, Umurayi, Dooga, Gindan Rai, Ajikamaka and Ankoma and Gidan Rai, Zayol, Doka Atikpo amongst others in the state.
The cry is coming even as the community leaders have also appealed for the deployment of security operatives to the troubled areas of Keana and Doma LGAs where over 50,000 farmers have been displaced by suspected herdsmen.
Barr. Zayol who lamented the increasing killings of the Tiv natives in Nasarawa while speaking with newsmen in Lafia, on Wednesday said ” last Saturday some of his kinsmen were attacked by suspected herdsmen, killing eleven people in Ajimaka community and other surrounding villages, there is no presence of security operatives deployed to the affected areas to forestall break down of law and order”
“We are under siege now, our people are being killed. This is why we are appealing to the Nasarawa state and Federal Government to deploy security operatives to the affected places of Doma and Keana Local Government Areas because over 50,000 of our people have been displaced by suspected herdsmen.
“Each time the suspected herdsmen have issues relating to the implementation of the anti-open grazing law by the Benue state government, they turn to attack our Tiv people in Nasarawa state. Tiv people in Nasarawa state are peace-loving and friendly to other tribes in the state. They must stop attacking our people for things we do not know about”, Zayol cried out.
One of the victims, a dry season farmer in Doka community of Doma LGA, Chief Augustine Kuza, told journalists that his rice farm of over 20 hectares has been taken over by suspected herdsmen.
“My rice farm of over 20 hectares has been taken over by herdsmen. They came fully armed and chased my workers away. I am calling on the government to deploy security operatives to the community to repel the herdsmen.
“I spent over N1 million to cultivate the farm which is now a grazing ground for the herdsmen. I am appealing to the Federal and State governments to come to my aid as my heart loses its position occasionally,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Nasarawa State Governor, Engr. Abdullahi Sule has described the brutal killing and displacement of farmers in the state as uncalled for.
Governor Sule, in a press statement signed and made available to newsmen by his Chief Press Secretary, Ibrahim Addra, said, “an attack that does not spare women and children bears the trademark of devilish elements who are bent on truncating the relative peace in the state.
The Governor assured residents of the state of his administration’s commitment to curb insecurity, saying, “security operatives have since commenced investigations that will expose the criminals with a view to punishing them according to the laws of the land”.
When contacted, the Aldo of Fulani herdsmen in Nasarawa state, Alhaji Lawal Dono declined to comment on the matter.