From Ron Jacob, Jos.
The Mwaghavul Development Association (MDA), Barkin Ladi Branch has said that it lost 79 persons in the recent Plateau killings. Over 30 of them were wounded and over 5,000 displaced.
In all, there are 38,051 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) taking refuge in 31 different camps in Plateau, the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) has said.
The IDPs are a fall-out of the gruesome killings of innocent persons in 11 villages of Gashish District in Barkin Ladi Local Government and those of Riyom and Jos South Local Governments by suspected armed herdsmen on Sunday, June 24, 2018.
Mrs Julie Bala, SEMA Director of Search and Rescue, made the disclosure on Monday in an interview with Everyday.ng in Mangu.
The director explained that Barkin Ladi Local Givernment recorded the highest number of IDPs of 16,885 staying in 11 different camps COCIN Church Heipang, Bang, Kassa, Lawurus, Fan, and Korus/Gankare as well as Gana Roop, and Dorowa Sotho.
“In Jos South LGA we have a total of 9,661 IDPs in Geo-Science Camps A and B, while in Riyom and Bokkos LGAs, we have 2,772 persons in four camps and 2, 086 person in six camps respectively,” she said.
She said that in Mangu LGA, there are a total of 6,653 persons in eight different camps including host communities.
The Director further explained that each of the five local governments has a camp, which they called “the host communities’’.
“When we say the host communities, we are talking about those relations hosting some of the affected victims in their respective houses,” she explained.
The SEMA Director further said that the agency has succeeded in visiting and donating relief materials to the affected camps except those of Farin Lamba in Riyom, Mangun and COCIN Church Ranpiya in Mangu.
Bala said that the statistics of women and children as well as the men in the various camps, were yet to be determined by the agency.
She denied any record of death in the IDP camps saying, “not even one IDP has lost his or her life while in camp so far’’.
Mr Bitrus Edward, the Paramount ruler of the Mwaghavul people in Barkin Ladi Local Governement, who disclosed the number of casualties among his peopld on Monday said, “security agents have failed Nigeria’’.
He said that beside the deaths and other casualties recorded during the dastardly killings at Gashish District of Barkin Ladi LGA and parts of Riyom, Jos Sourth and Mangu LGAs, over 80 houses were burnt down by the assailants.
“A total of 53 houses of the Mwaghavul people living in Rapomol village were razed down while 30 in Gindin Akwatia and X-Land villages were equally burnt down by fire with all their valuables including food stuffs.
“The Mwaghavul man, being a principled person, does not like being caged in one place to be fed by somebody, so most of the affected persons went back to their respective villages or stayed with their relations,” Edward said.
The paramount ruler, a retired civil servant, further disclosed of all the wounded, none allowed the government to treat them but all ran to their relatives who paid the bills.
“In the past, before anything could happen that would be detrimental to the lives and properties of citizens, the security agencies, especially the DSS and CID, would have alerted the authorities for necessary actions.
“But what do we have today? Bandits can attack for several hours without anything being done to stop them as it happened in Gashish District, when the assailants spent seven hours without any soldier accosting them’’, he lamented.
Edward took a swipe on President Muhammadu Buhari, for not heeding to the outcry of Nigerians to re-jig the security apparatus and remove security chiefs.
Also speaking, Mr Alfred Pofi, Coordinator of Mwaghavul IDPs, disclosed that a German NGO in conjunction with Eternal Love Services based in Kaduna donated assorted relief materials to IDPs at COCIN Ranpiya in Mangu town.
Pofi said that relief materials include 25 bags of Rice, 15 bags of Maize, 10 bags of sugar, 10 tins of Groundnut oil, six bags of powered Milk, six cartons of Maggie Cubes and 12 bales of second-hand clothings.
He expressed gratitude to the donors and called on other NGOs, caaa1orporate bodies and individual philanthropists to equally see the need to touch the lives of the IDPs most of whom he said are living under terrible conditions.
Recall that over 200 lives were lost to the attack launched on Sunday, June 24 by suspected herdsmen leaving behind thousands of people displaced in Barkin Ladi, Riyom, Jos South and Mangu Local Governments.