Gunmen again killed no fewer than 13 persons in Mangu Council Area of Plateau State just as the government and security agencies are trying to find a lasting solution to the ceaseless attacks on innocent citizens in the area.
An eyewitness told The Guardian that the gunmen armed with sophisticated weapons and numbering about 20, invaded neighbouring Pankshin Council Area and rustled several cows.
He said as they were moving the cows out of the area, some youths intercepted them at Kerang village, adding that in the encounter, the youths arrested some of the rustlers and recovered some cows from them.
“It was a tough battle between the youths and the rustlers. At the end, three of them were arrested and some of the cows recovered. The cows and the suspects were handed over to the Police in Kerang,” he said.
He added that those who escaped later killed 13 persons at Kombun village and that the remains of the victims had been deposited at the Mangu General Hospital.
Responding to the attack, Plateau State Governor, Simon Bako Lalong, condemned the killing of innocent persons.
In a statement by his Director of Press and Public Affairs, Dr. Makut Simon Macham, the governor described the attack as another attempt to breach the peace that has returned to the state.
While commiserating with victims and families of the deceased, he warned that his administration would not fold its hands and watch any group or individuals cause chaos in the state and return it to the dark days of insecurity.
“We have toiled to ensure that peace returns to Plateau State and we will not allow anyone to frustrate our efforts. We are determined to deal decisively and firmly with anybody found culpable in attacking or inciting people to attack one another,” he said.
Also responding, the state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP Tyopev Matthias Terna, said the command got information yesterday at 7:30 am that gunmen suspected to be herdsmen attacked residents of Kulben village in Kombun district of Mangu Council.
“As a result of the attack, one Klengchin Yusuf and 11 others were killed, while one person who was critically injured is receiving treatment at the Mangu General Hospital.
“On getting the information, the Plateau State Commissioner of Police (CP), Isaac Akinmoyede, directed the Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge Operations to lead detectives to the scene to stop the attack, arrest perpetrators and restore normalcy in the area,” the statement added.
It said the investigation into the case was ongoing and sought information from members of the public to facilitate arrest and prosecution of perpetrators of the dastardly act.