The Late 5: Miyetti Allah says Plateau killings ‘retaliatory’, Presidency says attacks are politically motivated and other stories

These are the stories that drove the conversation today:

The Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN)  has described Sunday killings by suspected herdsmen in three local government areas (LGAs) in Plateau State as retaliatory.

Chairman of North-Central Zone of the association, Danladi Ciroma who accused the communities of shielding alleged cow thieves and attacking security officials who wanted to arrest them, said the gruesome attacks on Riyom, Jos South and Barkin Ladi LGAs were reprisal to the herdsmen losing about 300 cows in different communities of the LGAs.

“Fulani herdsmen have lost about 300 cows in the last few weeks – 94 cows were rustled by armed Berom youths in Fan village, another 36 cows were killed by Berom youths. In addition to that, 174 cattle were rustled and the criminals disappeared with them to Mangu.

“Since these cows were not found, no one should expect peace in the areas. Even soldiers that went after the criminals to recover the rustled cows were shot by the armed rustlers and eventually escaped with all the cows,” Ciroma said.

President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday decried how desperate politicians have increasingly cheapened human life in their quest to establish a reign of instability and chaos in the country for political gains.

This was contained in a statement reacting to recent clashes in Plateau, which left scores dead by the Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, in Abuja who said that those behind the killings hoped that it would give them an advantage in the coming elections.

“We know that a number of geographical and economic factors are contributing to the longstanding herdsmen/farmers clashes, but we also know that politicians are taking advantage of the situation. This is incredibly unfortunate.”

“Nigerians affected by the herdsmen/farmer clashes must always allow the due process of the law to take its course rather than taking matters into their own hands,’’ the statement added.

The Inspector General of Police (IGP), Ibrahim Idris, has deployed the police special intervention force to restore peace to the troubled region of Plateau State.

As contained in a statement on Monday by the Force Public Relations Officer, Jimoh Moshood, two police aerial surveillance helicopters, five Armored Personnel Carriers (APCs) and three Police Mobile Force Units (PMF) were deployed while two Counter Terrorism Units (CTU), Police Intelligence Unit and conventional police personnel from other states have also been deployed to the affected areas.

The intervention force is headed by the Deputy Inspector General of Police, Department of Operations. They are set to coordinate and supervise operations on the ground with the ultimate aim of ending the lingering crisis.

The IGP also directed the Commissioner of Police in charge of monitoring unit to lead the police special investigation team to the affected areas and other flash points in Plateau alongside an investigation team comprising the intelligence response team, the Special Tactical Squad (STS) and the technical platforms expected to carry out a thorough and discreet investigation into the killings and promptly apprehend the perpetrators.

The Nigerian Army troops of 301 Artillery Regiment (General Support) has on Monday arrested two suspected Boko Haram persons who engage in supplying fuel to terrorists in Nafada, Gombe State.

In a statement signed by the Director of Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Texas Chukwu he explained that the two suspects are one Mohammed Adamu Zika, a driver and  Bukar Adamu Haji, assistant station manager in one of the fuel station in Gombe State.

 The spokesperson added that  other accomplices in the crimes were at large but that the troops have already  intensified efforts to arrest them.

The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has condemned as “extremely callous, inhuman and brazenly divisive,” the statement by the Presidency on the gruesome massacre of hundreds of innocent Nigerians in Plateau state last Sunday.

The PDP expressed shocked that at the time Nigerians expected the Presidency to take immediate steps to restore order, safeguard the lives of the people, exert justice and bring succour to victims, the Buhari Presidency toed the path of divisiveness, which is capable of worsening the tensed situation in the state.

A statement issued in Abuja on Monday by Kola Ologbondiyan, its National Publicity Secretary, said: “It is unfortunate that rather than taking actions to get to the roots of killings and banditry in the land, President Muhammadu Buhari resorted to political colourations by engaging in his usual blame game of unnamed politicians.

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