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Breaking: Herdsmen continue attacks on Plateau, hit Bassa



FOLLOWING persistent attacks on some villages in Bokkos Local Government Area of Plateau State by some gunmen suspected to be Fulani herdsmen, the death toll in the attacks, which started on Wednesday, has risen to 20.
This was as another four people were killed in Bassa Local Government Area in the early hours of Saturday.
Sunday Tribune gathered that victims were murdered in their sleep by gunmen who invaded Laake village in Kwall district of the local government.
The national president of Irigwe Development Association, Honourable Sunday Abdul, who confirmed this to Sunday Tribune in Jos, said the gunmen suspected to be Fulani herdsmen stormed Laake village in a commando-like operation, killing four children were killed in their sleep.
learnt that the incident started last Wednesday when gunmen, in their large numbers invaded both Dafo and Josho villages in the local government, with the attack said to have lasted till Friday.
The attackers, it was learnt, killed 18 people while two others died on their way to the hospital in Jos.
Worse hit villages included Ngakudung, Farunhai, Mhorok, Ganda and Warrem-Hotom.
Also hit were Maidunna and Josho, where Sen. Joshua Dariye (APC/Plateau Central), took relief materials to last week, following an attack on the village in February.

The councillor representing Dafo ward, Hon. Danjuma Mabas, who confirmed the latest number of causalities said, apart from the 20 that were given mass burial on Saturday, there were several others that are still missing, adding that over 50 houses were burnt.
“The attackers,” he said, “swooped on the two villages in their large number ahead of President Mohammadu Buhari’s visit to Plateau State, having got wind of the fact that the security men had been withdrawn to provide security for the president.”
“As of Friday evening, no fewer than 20 people were killed, over 50 houses were burnt while many other people are still missing,” Mabas added.
Another prominent native of Bokkos, Reverend Mamot Daladi Adams, said the withdrawal of security men at the local government paved the way for the gunmen to launch the attack on the affected villages.
He said: “From our findings, the security men on ground in the local government were withdrawn to protect Mr. President, who was on a two-day visit to Plateau State. The rate of attack in the state is highly disturbing; no fewer than five traditional rulers have been killed in this local government in recent times, yet the state government is deceiving the Federal Government that there is peace in the state.”
Some of the villagers, who spoke to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), said that the attackers wore “black uniform” and had sophisticated guns.
“The attackers wore black uniforms and had something that looked liked a scarf on their heads,” one Malo Mafulul, told NAN at Ganda village.
Wabas, who confirmed Mafulul’s claims, described the situation as “scary,” saying that more people were still unaccounted for.
Major Umar Adams, the spokesman of Operation Save Haven (OPSH), the security outfit in charge of security in Plateau, confirmed the attacks.
Reacting to the allegation that the redeployment of military men to reinforce security operatives in Jos during the visit of Mr. President caused the killings in both Bokkos and Bassa local governments, the Media Officer of STF, Major Umar Adams said no soldier was redeployed from the two areas to Jos.
According to him, the military men used during the visit of Mr. President were those within Jos metropolis and its environs, adding that when the command got wind of the incident in Bokkos, it reacted promptly and was able to arrest five people in connection with the incident.
The state government also denied the insinuation that security men were withdrawn from both Bokkos and Bassa to reinforce the security men in Jos during the president’s visit.

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