Nigeria: Group Protests Serial Killings of Plateau Traditional Rulers

21 September 2019

Plateau Heritage Movement, a pressure group in Plateau has decried what it described as serial killings of traditional rulers in the state without any arrest made.

Addressing a press conference in Jos yesterday, convener of the group, Mr. Mangna Yusuf Wamyil listed five traditional rulers that had been murdered by assailants in recent times without any arrest, with the most recent being Alhaji Muhammed Bayero, the Dakacin Langai of Pyem chiefdom of Mangu Local Government Area of Plateau State who doubles as the Village Head of Kadunu.

He said, "Bayero was reportedly gunned down in his residence on Sunday 15th September, 2019 by unknown assailants, around 8p.m.

"This untimely death of the traditional rulers casts a dark shadow on the state of security in Plateau State.

"Before this killing of Sarkin Kadunu, Saf Ron Kulere, Dah Lazarus Agai, the paramount ruler of Bokkos Local Government Area, and longest serving Plateau monarch at the time of his death (over 40 years on the throne), was killed in 2016. Again, in Bokkos Local Government Area, the Makai Forof, Dah Ali Magaji, and the District Head of Manguna, Saf Annong Adake, were also killed in similar fashion before the Saf Ron Kulere. In November 2018, the Long Dorok, Mr. David Dongbam, a Second Class Chief in Shendam Local Government Area was kidnapped, and released few days afterwards.

"As a movement, we are saddened by reason of the action of the gunmen who seem to be announcing their presence in the state through sporadic acts of violence that have claimed many lives in recent times. From the city centre of Jos, the Plateau State capital to our villages, it is the same story of sorrow, pain, and fear from acts of criminality which appear to have confounded security agencies."

The group said that the elderly and royal class were the custodians of the heritage of the people, nurtured and passed down from generation to generation, adding that the violence seemed to be targeting the peoples heritage.

"Consequently, we are calling on the police to as a matter of urgency, investigate, find, and prosecute the killers of Sarkin Kadunu, and to also solve the murders of Saf Ron Kulere, District Head of Manguna, and the Makai Forof.

Calling on the state government to ensure that the right steps were taken to unmask the perpetrators of the incident, the group said "government must as an emergency, do whatever is necessary to make the people of Plateau State feel safe and secure, as the security situation in the state, especially in Jos, is currently worsening."

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