At least seven internally displaced persons in Central Nigeria’s Plateau State were Saturday wounded by armed herders in their farms near Jos.
The villagers had gone to clear their farms in Kak village of Riyom area for cultivation. But the herders who had attacked and sacked the predominantly Berom Christian natives mobbed them with deadly weapons.
“After our displacement in 2012, we went to clear our farmlands preparatory to the incoming farming season but a group of Fulani youths, numbering over 50 attacked us,” a victim of the attack, Mr. Joshua Choji said.
The attackers, Choji said questioned their return to the land they (herders) had taken over.
“They were asking what we were doing in the land they had taken over,” said Choji who suffered machete cuts on his head and hand during the attack.
“I recognized one Ibrahim Mairiga who migrated to the area some three years ago, among the attackers. They said they will eliminate us and go scot-free as the present administration in the country is theirs,” Choji added.
A youth leader in the area, Mr. Solomon Pam said Government securities alerted to the attack arrested the victims and their leaders, a Village Chiefs included.
“Seven people including an aged man, Mr. John Makama were severely injured. But when we reached out to the military task force and Police, they arrested two of the attackers along with some of our youths and traditional ruler, Mr. Clement Pam and a lower Chief, Mr. Labi Danjuma,” said Pam, the Plateau Youth Council Chairman of Riyom Local Government.
At the same time of the Kak village attack, another group of herders attacked and killed a farmer, Emmanuel Joshua in neighboring Ta-Hoss village.
Joshua, 32, was ambushed and hacked to death while returning from the farm, Youth leader of Ta-Hoss village, Mr. Irmiya James said.
His murder literally shattered his young wife, Sarah who recently had a baby.
Last year, herdsmen mowed down crops belonging to locals in Riyom, including farms in Kak and Ta-Hoss villages.
In Sopp area under which Kak village is, the locals were openly warned by the herders to stay off their farms after they were mowed down but no arrest was made.