Emmanuel Ukumba in Lafia
The death toll in the communal clash that engulfed some communities in Toto Local Government Area of Nasarawa State has risen to 30, Bassa community claimed.
The Public Relations Officer of the Bassa Cultural and Development Union in the state, Duniya Moreh, disclosed this in a statement he issued to journalists in Lafia wednesday.
According to him, â€œNot less than 30 Bassa persons have been murdered with many still missing and unaccounted for. This figure includes women and children, whom it is universally accepted, should be spared and unharmed in a situation of crisis.â€
The imagemaker of the Bassa community continued: â€œIt is disheartening that over 50,000 Bassa persons are currently displaced and living in the surrounding local government areas of the state,â€ lamenting that many more are still in the bushes finding their way out of the local government area.
He traced the origin of the crisis to an inter-communal clash that took place in Kogi State recently.
â€œThe Egbura on April 22, 2018, kidnapped two Bassa brothers from the same parents who are residing in Umaisha town. The boys – Ephraim Moses Gunu and Manaseh Moses Gunu-have not been found till date and are presumed to have been murdered,â€ he expressed worry.
However, investigations by THISDAY revealed that the crisis was said to have started with an attack on Sebu village at about 10:30p.m. on April 23, 2018.
It was also learnt that unidentified gunmen attacked Bassa village at about 5:30a.m. last Monday, and subsequently went on killing several people during the attack.
It was gathered that other villages that were attacked included Daji, Shekaruku, Kokoto, Kuwa, Kovo and Kolo.
The union however commended the effort of Governor Umaru Tanko
Al-Makura for his prompt actions by sending in security forces to tackle the situation.
Meanwhile, a former Nigeria Ambassador to Poland, Dr. Samuel Wodi Jimba, has called on both the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) to immediately open up internally displaced persons camps within the local government area as well as deploy relief materials to the victims of the clash who are now scattered in various parts of the state and Federal Capital Territory.
In the same vein, he called for a total cessation of the clashes and a return to dialogue which he said is the best path to lasting peace in Toto Local Government.
He urged the security presence be maintained until all issues pertinent the clashes are investigated and resolved.