A coalition of peace-building and humanitarian organizations operating in Plateau State and other parts of Nigeria, under the aegis of Conferences of Plateau State Peace Builders Network and Global Peace and Life Rescue Initiative (GOPRI), has bemoaned a recent attack in a community in Mangu Local Government Area of Plateau State, where no fewer than ten lives were lost.
Recall that gunmen on Sunday night killed 10 persons in an attack in Kulben, a community in Kombum District of Mangu. The armed militia reportedly attacked the community around 10 p.m. when the victims, mostly vigilantes, were patrolling the area.
It was gathered that a prompt intervention of men of Operation Safe Haven, (OPSH), an internal military outfit deployed in Plateau State to maintain security, stopped more killings and reprisal attacks.
The sad development took residents by surprise given that OPSH had since restored peace not only in the area but also in the state as a whole, through engaging in some peace-building measures including parleys with stakeholders.
Reacting to the latest attack in Mangu, the coalition expressed sadness that some unscrupulous elements could want to set the state back on fire again despite the progress made so far by OPSH in restoring peace on the Plateau.
The coalition, in a statement made available to Blueprint in Abuja on Wednesday, signed by Amb. Melvin Ejeh, Executive Director of GOPRI, and Dr. Dung Bot, National Coordinator of COPPBN, described the action of the attackers as heinous and barbaric, devoid of human reasoning.
Noting that the prompt and effective intervention of OPSH halted the attacks from spreading which would have resulted in unimaginable casualty of innocent citizens, the group tasked security agencies to immediately launch a manhunt for the perpetrators to bring them to book.
The coalition thanked the First Lady of Nigeria, Senator Oluremi Tinubu, for her generous financial, material and moral support not only to the families of the victims but also to the Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs in Plateau State.
According to the group, Tuesday’s donation of N500 million to victims of the Plateau crises, to be disbursed under the Renewed Hope Initiative and Social Investment Programme, was the first for any First Lady in the history of the country.
The statement read in parts: “We are surprised that the killings came at a time when all stakeholders working for peace in Plateau State are doing everything possible to restore total peace to the general area.
“Nothing can be more animalistic and barbaric than the actions of these humans with animals heart. We urge the security agencies to hunt them down and bring them to account for their actions.”
On the other hand, the group hailed the First Lady for her generosity in reaching out to the families of the crises in the state.
“We wish to profoundly commend the mother of Nigeria, the First Lady of the nation, and the dear wife of our President, for her gigantic and the most empathic donations ever made by the wife of any Nigeria president’s foundation to internally displaced persons in Nigeria. We were so moved by her visit and cash donations of N500 million to victims of crises in the state. This has no doubt, further convinced us that President Bola Tinubu and his wife mean well for Nigeria,” it said.
The coalition called on all communities in the state to be on high alert, tasking them to look out for any suspicious movements of some persons in their communities.