15 March 2019

Nigeria: Killings, Destruction of Property Continue in Taraba Amid Curfew, Heavy Security

Jalingo — Dreams of addressing the security challenges in Jalingo, capital of Taraba State, by imposing a dusk-to-dawn curfew has, no doubt, become a mirage as silent killings and wanton destruction of property are still recorded daily.

As at the time of filing in this report, scores of persons have reportedly been killed silently while several others are nursing various degrees of injuries.

The ongoing silent killings and destruction of property, which was earlier restricted to Jalingo metropolis as observed by The Guardian, has spilled over to the nearby Ardo-Kola Council.

The mayhem, which started in political hue, is gradually wearing religious toga, as adherents of the two major religions in the state are getting involved.

Moslems domiciling in Christian-dominated areas are reportedly relocating and vice versa, a situation observers said was unprecedented since the creation of the state.

Perturbed by the development, prominent elders of the state, whom The Guardian noticed working tirelessly to douse the tension, blamed both the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the state government for the ugly development.

While faulting INEC's inability to provide a level-playing ground for the governorship candidates of the two major political parties in the state, they blamed the government for failing to secure the state.

A community leader, Alhaji Dahiru Umar, called on the Federal Government to declare state of emergency on Taraba, which he believes will help stop the killings.

"INEC has let the people of the state down by the way it conducted the elections. A re-run ought to have been conducted in most of the councils that we experienced malpractices ranging from malfunctioning card readers to under-age voting," he observed.

The good governance advocate, who is also the state chairman of KOWA party, asserted that the "problem is not with the people but with the government. The governor's body language divided the people along religious lines."

Some stakeholders, who supported Umar, added that a state of emergency would help to restore peace to the state.

Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), David Misal, said the command was on top of the situation and that normalcy was returning.


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