Jos Violence Claims 13 Lives, 27 Houses

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Seriki Adinoyi in Jos

No fewer than 13 people were killed in the violence that erupted in Jos on Sunday afternoon, a community leader in the area, Mr. Richard Bapi, has said.

He said six corpses had been deposited at the Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH) while others were immediately buried by their relatives.

Bapi gave the number of houses destroyed in the violence as 27.

A source close to the hospital management also confirmed to THISDAY that at least six corpses were deposited at the JUTH mortuary while some of those who sustained gunshot injuries of various degrees were being treated.

But the Plateau State Police Command put the casualty figure at five.

Armed soldiers were seen yesterday arresting residents of Tina Junction, Dutse Uku and Bauchi Ring Road, all in Jos North Council.

The indiscriminate arrest of innocent people triggered fresh tension as women in the area came out to protest.

But it was gathered that soldiers went further to arrest the protesting women.

The new corpses recovered yesterday included that of Mr. Daniel Haruna, a carpenter.

Also killed in the crisis was Michael Chuwang, the youth leader of St. Michael Catholic Church in Nasarawa Gwong, while another unidentified corpse at Yan Trailer near the Fellowship Baptist Church was also found.

A retired soldier, simply identified as Babayale, who was hit by a stray bullet in the presence of his wife and children, and was rushed to the hospital, died in the process.

His wife, on hearing it, collapsed and was also rushed to a hospital.

Meanwhile, Police spokesman, DSP Mathias Terna Tyopev, in a statement said five people were killed and 12 houses burnt.

He said: “On May 26, 2019 at about 11.30hours, the Plateau State Police Command received a report from one Sarki Arum of Tina Area of Jos North Local Government Area of Plateau State that one Enoch Monday of Tina was seen lying motionless at an area between Dutse Uku and Angwan Damisa in Jos North Local Government Area.

“The command immediately mobilised to the area and removed the body to Plateau Specialist Hospital where he was confirmed dead by the doctor on duty and corpse deposited at the mortuary of the same hospital.

“Youths of the area started protesting when news of Enoch’s death filtered into the community. The Area Commander Jos Metro mobilised personnel of the divisions within his jurisdiction and moved with the Commanding Officer of 8 Police Mobile Force (8PMF) and the Divisional Police Officer of Nasarawa Gwong Divison under whose jurisdiction the crime was committed to the scene of the crime.

“As a result of the protest, five persons lost their lives and 12 houses were burnt down. With the efforts of the Area Commander Jos metro, the Commander of Operation Safe Haven, the Commanding Officer 8 PMF (Police Mobile Force) and the Divisional Police Officer (DPO), Nasarawa Gwom Division, the situation has been brought under control.”

According to the statement, “The area is being patrolled. Residents of the area are enjoined to remain calm. Efforts are on to track and arrest those who were involved in the criminal protest.”