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Soldiers told us they were not given orders to stop killer herdsmen —Plateau monarch



The paramount ruler of Irigwe Ethnic Nationality in Plateau State, His Royal Highness, Bra Ngwe Irigwe, Rt Rev Ronku Aka, has accused security operatives and soldiers of not responding to calls to move in and stop marauding killer herdsmen who laid siege on communities in the Bassa Local Government Area from Saturday, July 30, to Wednesday, August 4.

While lamenting the tragedy that befell his people during the invasion of their communities which led to the killing of 70 people and over 2,500 houses burnt down, Aka claimed he was reliably told by some soldiers who were deployed in the communities that they had no instruction from their superiors to repel the invaders.

In a statement by the monarch’s private secretary made available to Ripples Nigeria on Sunday, the traditional ruler said it was worrying that in the face of such devastating attacks that lasted for days, the security hierarchy refused to give an order for the soldiers to move in to quell the uprising.

The Bar Ngwe Irigwe added that the destruction that took place in his kingdom had further exposed the handicap of Governor Simon Lalong and the council chairmen as chief security officers in their respective areas of jurisdiction.

“I don’t blame the local government chairman in Bassa or the governor of the state over the calamity that has befallen my people.

“At peace meetings, the governor will give order but the security men will go and do a different thing.

“During the recent attacks in my communities, the soldiers and other security operatives were around.

“As the invaders were carrying out the attacks in Jebu Miango and advancing to other communities, we expected them to confront the invaders and stop the destruction going on but that did not happen.

Read also: Plateau killings against Islamic tenets – JNI

“When I enquired what was happening, some soldiers cried to me that they did not receive the order to repel the attackers on the communities.

“Some of them who expressed frustration over the situation wondered the essence of holding guns which they could not use and left the scene while the attackers continued with their destruction in the communities.

“If the security agents were deployed and allowed to do their job, may be, the attackers would not have succeeded with their evil plans and my people would not be suffering what they are experiencing at the moment.

“But we don’t want more deaths in the communities. I have told my people not to retaliate what was done to them but we need justice going forward,” the highly respected monarch said.

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