FOLLOWED renewed hostilities in some parts of Jos, the capital of Plateau State on Monday to the early hour of Tuesday, no fewer than ten persons were killed and several houses including vehicles burnt by some irate youths out to avenge the killings of their kinsmen earlier killed.
It would be recalled that some parts of the state capital have been in crisis since last Friday as a result of the 14 people killed by gunmen suspected to be Fulani herdsmen at Rukuba road in Jos North local government area of the state. The situation however turned ethnic on Sunday leading to the death of more people.
Tribune Online learnt that the situation took a frightening dimension on Monday at about 9:45 pm to the early hour of Tuesday when some people suspected to be fake soldiers in military uniform invaded Tina Junction, Dutse Uku of Jos North Council area and opened fire at the residence some of whom were keeping vigil over their community to wade off attack and gun down ten people.
Some of the residents of the area who spoke with Tribune Online said the fake military men shot indiscriminately at people and set houses ablaze at random adding that the elements held the communities to ransome for close to two hours before the arrival of the security agencies which later repelled them.
It was further gathered that the situation got worse in the early hour of Tuesday, when some Hausa/Fulani youths and the natives squared it up in areas like Rikkos, Dogon Dutse, Yan Shanu, Saint Michael area and burnt several houses including places of worships.
Among those who were shot by the fake military men was the community leader of the Mupum residing in Jos otherwise called Mishkaham Mupun of Nasarawa Gwom, Mr. Samuel Dawam. The affected areas are still locked down and residents indoor as at the time of filing this report.
Going round Jos city centre, especially the commercial area, the city is still deserted as many commercial premises are yet to open for businesses including commercial banks.
When contacted the Media Officer, Operation Safe Haven, Major Umar Adam confirmed renewed hostility in some parts of the state capital but declined comment on the number of casualty and the houses burnt.
“I know some people were killed and houses burnt but the figures are yet to be ascertained. We don’t work with speculation. All can tell you, for now, are that all the areas you mentioned are under control and our men are on top of the situation. When the figures are ready we would call you people and brief you accordingly, but for now normalcy has returned to the affected areas.
“On the allegation of fake military men, we are not aware of that because our men are fully on ground and they have the not apprehended any, we cannot comment on that. But we are encouraging them to live in peace with one another if they embrace peace bad elements will not infiltrate them” he said.
However, the Governor in an independent state broadcast expressed his concern on the persisting security challenge in the state and vowed to tackle the situation and restore normalcy to all affected parts of the state.
“It is sad that we are celebrating this year’s independence with heavy hearts, considering the recent unfortunate incidences at Rukuba road, and some areas in the Jos metropolis. Some innocent citizens were attacked and killed by agents of evil and destruction.
“My administration feels deeply concerned and has directed security agencies to continue their tireless efforts at nipping the incidents in the bud. I, therefore, dedicate this year’s independence message to the deceased and their families as well as the unfortunately displaced citizens who have been dislocated from their homes by senseless violent attacks and living under various forms of trauma and deprivations.
“My prayer goes out to all the victims with the assurance that this administration will not leave any stone unturned towards ensuring that critical issues of resettlement are properly addressed. I am glad that the special committee on the resettlement of displaced persons constituted by the administration is working round the clock to ensure early return of the IDPs to their ancestral homes before the end of the year, while more radical measures are being taken to contain the situation within the ambits of the law.” He said.