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Taraba government blames Cameroonian cattle rustlers for killings

Posted: January 26, 2023 at 6:21 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

The Taraba State Government on Thursday blamed the recent attacks in parts of Gassol and Bali Local Government Areas of the state on cattle rustlers from the neighbouring republic of Cameroon.

This is even as the government exonerated Governor Darius Ishaku of allegations that he was sponsoring the crisis against a particular ethnic group in the state.
The Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mrs. Lois Emmanuel, at a press conference in Jalingo said the allegation was the handiwork of mischief makers.
The commissioner explained that the government’s findings indicate that the problem was a case of cattle rustling by rustlers from the neighbouring Republic of Cameroon who invaded several communities in the areas.
“The attention of the Taraba State Government has been drawn to the ongoing rumours and mischievous interpretation being given to the current security challenges in Gassol and Bali Local Government areas of the state.
“Those behind this unhealthy development have tried all available wicked tricks to label the problem in these areas as a crisis targeted at a particular ethnic group. The government’s findings indicate that the problem is a case of cattle rustling. Further information available to the government also indicates that cattle rustlers from neighbouring Cameroon have invaded several communities in the areas and are threatening lives and properties, especially cattle belonging to the Indigenous inhabitants.
“This development has attracted resistance from the local inhabitants. This is therefore not an inter-ethnic or intra-ethnic rivalry. For a fact, these two local governments are among the most naturally endowed parts of Taraba State, especially in agricultural produce, and therefore, have a natural attraction to foreigners and other Nigerian seeking comfort and career in farming and other business activities.
“Criminals and social misfits are not left out in the rush to these communities for economic self-sustenance. In their case, they frequently exceed or outrightly abuse the boundaries of hospitality and accommodation offered by the indigenous people. The Internally Displaced Persons’ camps have not been spared by these visiting marauders who sometimes kill, maim and rape women. The attempt by the indigenous people to checkmate these trends is largely part of the issues currently at stake in the areas,” she said.
On what the government is doing to address the security challenge, the commissioner said the government has taken steps to checkmate criminality in the communities and to ensure peaceful co-existence between visitors and their hosts, adding that the government has successfully ensured that the innocent among the foreigners suffer no harm or victimization.
“We have also involved vigilantes in curtailing the activities of the criminals, under the strict surveillance of security agencies. They are never allowed to operate alone to prevent them from taking the laws into their hands. This benevolence and civility will remain the emphasis and focus of government intervention now and in the future in these areas and the state in general.
“We wish to, therefore, reiterate that the safety of lives and properties in these areas and the entire state remain the topmost priority of the government. The government wishes to also assure all non-indigenes on a legitimate and genuine mission to these areas and other parts of the state of protection by security agencies,” the commissioner added.

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