4 killed, residents flee as gunmen invade Taraba community

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No fewer than four persons killed on Saturday by unknown gunmen suspected to be Jukun militias invaded Tor-Iorshaer community, Rafinkada ward in the Wukari Local Government Area of Taraba State.

It was gathered that the victims recently returned to their community based on the directives given to them by the state government.

The gunmen, who set fire to several houses, attacked the community at about 11.20 pm on Saturday for more than 30 minutes, without being checkmated by the police or military personnel.

Survivors of the attack, who spoke with SaharaReporters, lamented that many of the residents had returned to the community, based on a directive of the State Governor, Darius Ishaku, that normalcy had returned to the areas and that the security agencies would ensure the protection of the lives and property of the indigenes.

The gunmen, however, struck on Saturday, sacking the Tor-Iorshaer community without any visible presence or intervention of the security agencies.

The deceased were identified as Godwin Meer, Oryina Sunday Mdooga, Alfred Sylvanus Mchivga and Ayar Chia.

“This attack is one of several attacks in the past that made us, the indigenous people of the community, to flee our homes to neighbouring states for safety. No security agent seems to be in view despite a military camp within the community.

“Many of us are returnees. We acted based on the Taraba State government’s directive that the crisis was over, that all displaced people should return. But on returning home, we were suddenly attacked again and killed by the Jukun militias.”

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Another survivor noted that the community forwarded the letters of their return to all the relevant security agencies in the state, requesting for security presence, but got nothing.

“We had been displaced for close to two years without the government’s intervention. Meanwhile, it was the Taraba State Government, who issued the directive for the displaced persons to return home to their ancestral land that the crisis was over,” the survivor said.

A government official said the only way to resolve the crisis was to ensure that the security agencies do their work and do not take sides with any ethnoreligious interests in the state.

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