Saturday, 13th August 2022
<To guardian.ng
Search
Breaking News:

Angry youth attack Irigwe Palace over monarch’s meeting with herdsmen

By Isa Abdulsalami Ahovi, Jos
17 January 2022   |   2:36 am
Angry youths at the weekend attacked the palace of Paramount Ruler of Irigwe Kingdom in Bassa Council, Plateau State, Mbara Ngwe. Troops of Operation Safe Heaven (OPSH) were notified of the attack on the palace of the paramount Ruler.

[FILES] Youths

Angry youths at the weekend attacked the palace of Paramount Ruler of Irigwe Kingdom in Bassa Council, Plateau State, Mbara Ngwe. Troops of Operation Safe Heaven (OPSH) were notified of the attack on the palace of the paramount Ruler.

A statement by the Military Information Officer of OPSH, Ishaku Takwa said that troops had been mobilised to the scene to ensure law and order in the vicinity.

It was gathered that the youths after a mass burial of 18 residents allegedly killed by herdsmen in Ancha community on Wednesday, January 12, 2022, headed for the palace of their Paramount Ruler to protest.

Their protest was anchored on the inter-religious meeting by the elders of Bassa and their Muslim counterparts. The Bassa are pre-dominantly Christians.
Their youths belief was that there should be nothing like meeting with the herders who are believed to be perpetrating the atrocities in the land.

The 18 victims of the last attack Bassa were given mass burial yesterday. The gunmen also set several houses on fire and destroyed other property of the natives; and many people injured in the process.

President, Irigwe youth Development Association (IYDA), Ezekiel Bini confirmed that those killed were given mass burial in three different locations in Jos.

According to Bini, “You know that the attacks were carried out in different places within the Ancha community. Some of the victims were burnt beyond recognition.”

He continued: “so, after we went round the village in search of the victims, 18 corpses were assembled in three places and buried in groups of 11, five and two.”

The IYDA regretted that despite the Wednesday killings in Ancha village, the gunmen returned to the village on Thursday and destroyed some farms.
According to him, the people are tired of conducting mass burial and are living in constant fear because of the activities of the attackers.

“There are so many unanswered questions regarding the ongoing insecurity in the local government.

“Is it that those responsible for these attacks are not known? Why is it difficult for the government to stop them from killing innocent people?”
Following the unabated mass attacks, Bini led members to boycott by the meeting called by state government on Thursday.

“Anytime there is an attack on our people, the government will call for peace meeting; we have held series of peace meetings in the past. But, what is the result? Continued attacks on our people.

“So, when the government, through the peace Building Agency, called us for another meeting on Thursday after 18 of our people were killed, I said I will not go because, what is the point of going for a peace meeting that has never yielded the desired results?” he stated.
The youths are angry because their kinsmen are relating with their killers, they said.

A youth activist from Bassa, John Sunday, disclosed to The Guardian that they were angry with the ruler because each time they were attacked; the ruler will not call them. “We will just be left alone to deal with the situation by ourselves.

“During the mass burial of the last 18 victims, the Paramount Ruler did not show up at their burial. Besides, since he came to power, he has not made any peace movement to reconcile the warring factions in the kingdom. We are tired. He does not want peace. That was why the youths went to his palace.

“When the youths went there, they knocked at the door but there was no reply. The youth knew that he was inside. They did not force the gate or door open. With this, the Chief now called the soldiers of OPSH who immediately mobilised and raced to the palace. The soldiers went there and took the Chief and his lieutenants away in their vehicles. They left some soldiers behind.

“It was at that juncture that the angry youths went back and reinforced. Since the soldiers were few and insignificant compared to the multitude of youths were able to overpower them. Not by physical strength, after all they were armed to the teeth, but they did not shoot.
“It was later in the evening of Friday that the soldiers came to take over.”
The palace is calm now.