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Again, Fulani militia kills scores in Adamawa state

Musa Isa Ahmed Yola

Scores have been killed and several other people missing in Kwahine, Gidan Dadi and Karlahi villages of Demsa local government of Adamawa state in an attack, Saturday, by yet to be identified Fulani gunmen, few hours after government delegation led by the Adamawa state deputy governor delivered relief materials to the community over attacks by the unknown Fulani gunmen in August, 2016.

The attack is reported to have happened around 3 pm Saturday evening. The number of casualties is yet to be determined as at the time of filing this report.

Earlier in the day, a state government delegation led by the Deputy Governor of Adamawa state, Engineer Martins Babale delivered relief items and financial donations of N10million and about 797 bags of rice to Kodomun community in Demsa local government area, as compensations following attacks on the community by a group of unknown armed herdsmen in area which claimed over 30 lives and loss of properties worth millions of Naira in August of 2016.

The incessant clash between the Kodomun community and the Fulani herdsmen has led to reprisal attacks that resulted in the loss of about 47 cows by the herdsmen.

Presenting the relief materials to the people of  Kodomun, Governor Umar Jibrilla, represented by his deputy Engr.Martins Babale said, ‘’the assistance is part of the peace building Mechanism put in place by government towards finding a lasting solutions to the crisis.’’

“Government is going to implement the recommendations of white paper report of inquiry and punish accordingly those involved in perpetrating the crisis.

“I urge you to be your brother’s keepers by imbibing spirit of forgiveness and forge ahead for the progress of the area and the state at large”.

Babale said, “The state government will soon constitute Peace Reconciliation Committee to be saddled with responsibility of reconciling aggrieved people in the area, on the need to leave in peace with one another.’’

The Adamawa state government has already paid N4.7 million as compensation to Fulani herdsmen over the loss of 47 heads of cow in the clash.

Mallam Ahmed Sajoh, the Adamawa State Commissioner of Information speaking with newsmen shortly after the presentation of  797 bags of Rice and N10million to the Kodomun community said, “the payment to the aggrieved herdsmen is to forestall the breakdown of law and order.

“They said they lost 47 cows, so we said okay, we are going to compensate them with N100, 000 per cow and about N4.7million was given to them.”

Sajoh noted that, ‘’the state government’s action should not initiate a very dangerous precedent, so we now looked at it and said this are the kinds of things that can result in an escalation of violence and uprising, and loss of lives and properties, and we took prompt actions to pacify the communities that are involved.’’

The relief materials were received by the paramount ruler of Demsa, HRH Homun Gladstone Alhamdu Teneke, thanked government for the gesture observing that the prompt action of government to identifying with the plight of his people is a welcomed development. The Hama Batta, handed over the items to chairperson of  Demsa local government council, Mrs Wale Fwa, who appreciated the state government over the assistance the community has been getting from the government since the attacks.

Chairman of the affected community Pius Raymond appealed to government to beef up security in the area, as pockets of attacks are still recorded in the area. He also called on the state government to rehabilitate houses destroyed as a results of the attacks.

The state Police Public Relations Officer, Othman Abubakar said, ‘’About 400 Fulani militia overrun their men killing 3 officers, 2 other officers are missing and 4 riffles belonging to the police force are also missing.’’ Othman said, “The police killed several of the Fulani militia but they were able to leave with the corpses of their men.”

The Adamawa state government has condemned the Saturday’s attacks on Kwayine, Gidan Dadi and Karlahi villages in Demsa local government and described them as “unfortunate, unwarranted and totally unacceptable.”

In a statement issued by the Adamawa state commissioner of Information and strategy, Ahmad Sajoh, “the action is capable of derailing the peace process initiated by the state government. ‘’Governor Muhammadu Umaru Jibrilla has directed security agencies to deploy more security personnel to the area ensure that the security of lives and properties in the area adequately guaranteed.’’

Some residents of the three villages who spoke to press men said, several people have been killed and their houses burnt down. Residents of Kwayine, Gidan Dadi and Karlahi decried the poor state of security and the incessant happening of the event and the failure of the state government to intervene.

The deputy governor Martins Babale, while delivering relief materials to the Kodomun community said the government is acting based on the recommendation of the Joshua Atiku’s led panel of enquiry.

The question still begging for answers is, do the recommendations only suggest sending relief materials without beefing up security?

Many resident of the area said the government has sufficient information to bring to book the perpetrators of the heinous crimes since it has dialogued with them and paid compensation of N4.7 million to the killers.

 

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