By Teryima Andrew
The Irigwe Development Association has refuted allegations by the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association (MACBAN) that Irigwe militias killed it members in the recent attacks in Rafiki, in Bassa Local Government Area of Plateau state.
A statement jointly signed by the National President and Secretary Irigwe Development Association Sunday Abdu and I’ve Gulu on Monday has denied vehemently, the allegations by MACBAN.
“We feel diminished to have stooped so low, but because we have to save the discerning readers from such
lies and cheap propaganda, we are obligated to write.”
“We are therefore, compelled by the need to counter lies with the truth, and set the records straight we would not take much time and space because most, if not all the things we are going to say are known to you as the truth.
Here is our reaction to a statement released by the MIYETTI ALLAH CATTLE BREEDERS ASSOCIATION, MACBAN, on the 14th of March 2018.”
The press release call on government to identify perpetrators and arrest them, it also dined having nor harboring any militia group.
“We will like to reiterate for the umpteenth time, IRIGWE LAND does not have militia, Even though with the way these things keep happening, it would not be a
totally bad idea to start thinking of a way to secure our land from the herdsman’s siege.”
It blamed government for not been able to arrest the attackes “we wonder why government is still looking for the so-called ‘unknown gunmen’ that have continually unleashed terror on our people in plateau state and beyond. The solution is simple, arrest leaders of MACBAN and these killings will stop.”
It will be recalled that the Plateau state chairman of the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria MACBAN Nuru Abdullahi had reported the death of five of it members in the recent attack that occured in Rafiki, allegedly killed by Irigwe militia group.
The statement named the herders who fall prey to the attackers and their abode “for the avoidance of doubt; Baddikko Rogo, Adamu Musa, Salisu Ibrahim, Usman Alh Wada, Babangida Bajjhe and Damina Kiri were brutally killed and their villages of Rafiki, Dutsen kura, Maraban Dere and Rafin Bauna all fulani villages were affected and set ablazed.”
MACBAN also said it lost landed property and livestock.
“On Wednesday 14th March 2018 at about 5:45am, they cross into Rukuba Chiefdom of same Bassa Local Government Area and attack Fulani herdsmen at their residences. They killed 5 Innocent Fulani, burned down over 150 houses, set properties Worth Millions of Naira ablazed, fired 46 cows to death and carted away with about 400 cows.”
Plateau state government had taken security measures in containing the situation, imposed a dusk to dawn curfew in the area; it also directed security operatives to arrest perpetrators and bring them to book.
Already, the Nigeria Army said it has arrested seven suspects of the Rafiki attack.
A statement by the Director Army public relations Brig Gen Texas Chukwu, earlier had also said it recover weapons from the suspects arrested.
“Troops of 3 Division Garrison Jos Plateau State arrested 7 suspects; weapons recovered include one Ak 47 assault rifle with 26 rounds of 7.62mm special and One locally made single barrel loaded with 15 rounds.”