12th July, 2011
Soldiers and mobile policemen have been deployed to some communities in Taraba State were eight persons including a serving councilor and a village head were killed yesterday. The communal war victims were killed at Kaudad and Minder villages in Lau Local Government Area of Taraba State, Northeast Nigeria between the Kona and the Mumuye tribes.
A visit by P.M.NEWS to the area yesterday revealed that the problem began on Sunday afternoon when some Mumuye farmers allegedly intruded into a disputed farmland between the Kona tribe in Kaodad and Mumuye in Minder, a neighbouring village. Judgement was said to have been given in favour of the Kaodad tribe by a Joling High Court as the rightful owner of the disputed land.
According to P.M.NEWS investigations, three Kona farmers from Kaodad village went to the farm at about 2 p.m. on Sunday to inquire why the Mumuyes intruded into the land. But unfortunately for the three men, the Mumuyes who went to the farm were armed with assorted weapons, attacked them and butchered them to death.
It was gathered that tension was high in the two villages of Kaodad and Minder when the news of the gruesome murder of the three men filtered into the villages as both communities assembled their weapons ready for war.
This development compelled the councilor representing Kona ward in Jalingo Local Government, Mr. Danjuma Kiani to rush to the Kona village in Lau Local Government to appeal to his kinsmen and in the Mumuye tribe to lay down their arms and give peace a chance.
According to an eye witness, the councilor, on reaching the village, went along with the village head of Kona, Mr. Dauda Kindia to preach peace when both of them were attacked by the Mumuye youths. They were killed by the youths wielding weapons such bows, arrows, guns and cutlasses.
The killings went on until about 4 p.m. on Monday and before the arrival of soldiers and mobile policemen from Malingo, a total of eight persons all identified to belong to Kona tribe were butchered.
The bodies of the eight persons were evacuated in a pickup van by a combined team of soldiers and policemen to the Federal Medical Centre, FMC, Jalingo.
As at press time, a team of riot policemen and soldiers have taken control of the two villages while the residents have also fled the area.
When contacted on phone this morning, Taraba State Police Commissioner, Mrs. Chintua Ono confirmed to P.M.NEWS that a total of eight persons have been reported killed, adding that the situation had already been brought under control by a detachment of mobile policemen and soldiers from Jalingo.
She said no arrests have been made so far.