36 killed in Jos attacks, angry youths dump corpses at Government House

•Govt reimposes 24-hr curfew •Bunu, Gyang call for thorough investigation

BARELY two weeks after 25 travellers were killed in Jos North Local Government Area of Plateau State, gunmen suspected to be Fulani militias on Wednesday killed over 36 people, including children, in a midnight raid in the local government. 

The development made the state government to re-impose a 24-hour curfew in the troubled local government till further notice. 

Nigerian Tribune findings revealed that the attackers, suspected to be Fulani militias, invaded Yelwa Zangam community in Jos North local government in their large numbers at about 9:23 p.m. on Tuesday and released several gunshots into the air to announce their arrival. 

It was also learnt that the militias vandalised the iron bridge linking the community with the main town, which later made it difficult for security men to access the scene of the attack. 

A community leader, Ibrahim Dawan, speaking with Nigerian Tribune, said the attack was carried out with the intention to annihilate the entire people in the community, adding that apart from those who were shot and hacked to death, a reasonable number were trapped in their houses and burnt to ashes. 

“In Mai Agwan house, apart from his wife and two children, the other 14 people who took refuge were shot dead and the house set ablaze. Nobody escaped from the house. And there are other houses set on fire with people inside. The killings and burning lasted till the early hours of Wednesday. 

“Apart from bodies we have deposited at the Plateau State Specialist Hospital, we have close to 20 others that are about to be conveyed to the hospital but if there is no space in the mortuary, we may give them mass burial later in the day,” he said. 

A young lady identified as Blessing Zang, who was shot in the leg and now receiving treatment at Our Lady of Apostle Hospital, said she was the only survivor in the family of eight. “I was the only one that survived in my family; my mother who tried to shield us from being killed was shot dead, likewise my other siblings. Before the attackers left, they set the house on fire. I was able to crawl out of the thick smoke,” she said. 

At the Plateau State Specialist Hospital, the Chief Medical Director, Dr Philemon Golwa, told Nigerian Tribune that 15 corpses were deposited in the mortuary in connection with the attack, adding that the bodies were brought in by security men in the early hours of Wednesday. Operation Safe Haven in charge of security in Plateau State in a statement signed by its media officer, Major Ishaku Takwa, confirmed the incident, adding that the gunmen also destroyed houses and the bridge linking the town. 

The statement said troops eventually got to the scene of the attack by navigating through other villages. Following the killings, aggrieved members of the affected community deposited some corpses of those killed at the Little Ray Field Government House, to protest killing of their loved ones. 

The aggrieved youths barricaded the entrance to the Government House at about 2:45 p.m and called on the government to come to their rescue. 

In the same vein, national president, Anaguta Development Association, Sunday Bunu, called for a thorough investigation. Bunu told Nigerian Tribune that the incident was a rude shock to the community, because the people had been living peacefully with the neighbouring communities. 

The senator representing Plateau North, Istifanus Gyang, also condemned the killing, saying the situation on the Plateau was that of a people abandoned to their fate by the Federal Government. 

The senator, in a statement signed by his special assistant on media and protocol, Mr Musa Ibrahim Ashoms, called on the government to investigate the incident, identify those behind the act and bring them to book accordingly. 

Meanwhile, the state government has re-imposed 24-hour curfew on the local government. According to Governor Simon Lalong, the curfew came into force from 4:00 p.m of Wednesday until further notice. 

“The proactive decision became necessary following imminent threat to lives and properties within the local government area and the need to forestall the breakdown of law and order. 

“The 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. curfew in Jos South and Bassa local government areas still remain in place until further notice. Only people on essential duties are to be exempted from the curfew but should carry means of identification with them at all times,” the statement read.



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