Over 200 killed as herdsmen sack 11 villages in Plateau

Several people were allegedly killed in Gashish and Ropp Districts of Plateau State on Sunday, duringย attacks that were carried out on about 11 communities by suspected Fulani herdsmen.

Subsequently, the Plateau State Government has imposed a dusk-to-dawn curfew on Riyom, Barkin Ladi and Jos South Local Government Areas.

Although there were rumours that some soldiers might be missing, the Commander of the Special Military Taskforce code-named Operation Safe Haven, Major-General Anthony Atolagbe, said, โ€œitโ€™s not true, no soldier died and no soldier is missing.โ€

The decision, according to the government, was to avert further breakdown of law and order.

A terse statement issued on Sunday by the Secretary to the State Government, Rufus Bature, said the movement was restricted from 6:00 pm to 6:00 am, except for those on essential duties.โ€

The attack was said to have been launched at Xland, Gindin Akwati, Ruku, Nghar, Kura Falls and Kakuruk all in Gashish District. The communities were completely sacked by the assailants, reports said.

Other areas affected by the attack included Rakok, Kok and Razat all in Ropp District.

The Chairman, Public Accounts and Petition Committee in Plateau State House of Assembly representing Barkin Ladi, Peter Gyendeng, in an interview withย The PUNCHon Sunday, said the attack was โ€œa declaration of warโ€ on his constituency.

He claimed that โ€œmercenariesโ€ have been hired to come and kill people in Barkin Ladi LGA.

Gyendeng said, โ€œAs a matter of fact, the casualty rate is in hundreds; it is more than 100. In one place, it is above 51; in another, over 32 and yet in another area, it is same.

โ€œFor now, based on what we have on ground and the corpses that we have been receiving, it is probably over 200 casualties.

โ€œAltogether, about 11 villages were attacked and our people are there now trying to ascertain the number of deaths. The casualty rate is above 200 and counting (of the corpses) is still going on.

โ€œThis is war, it is a declaration of war on my people. War has been declared on Barkin Ladi LGA completely.

โ€œThere are mercenaries that have been hired to come and kill people in Barkin Ladi LGA.

โ€œThe killing started around 11:00 pm last (Saturday) night till this (Sunday) morning. And the killing still continues.โ€

When contacted, the spokesperson of the Plateau State Police Command, Matthias Tyopev, an Assistant Superintendent of Police, confirmed the killings to our correspondent, saying, โ€œ11 corpses have been recovered and no arrest has been made.โ€

He identified the 11 corpses as those of Dalyop Vanode, Dom Danladi, Bururu Wade, Joju Rala,Titus Danladi, Bitrus Malat, Alu Matir, Noron Monday, Cecilia Yohana, Dam Bulus and Ladi Danladi.

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