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Police confirm death of 22 travellers as bandits ambush religious group in Plateau

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THE Plateau State Police Command has confirmed that Saturday’s attacks on commuters in Jos North Local Government Area of Plateau State left 22 people dead and 14 others injured.

This was disclosed in a statement by the Spokesperson of the Police Command in the state Ubah Ogaba.

“On 14th August 2021 at about nine in the morning, the Plateau State Police Command received a distress call that a group of attackers suspected to be Irigwe youths and their sympathisers along Rukuba Road of Jos North LGA.

“They attacked a convoy of five buses with Muslim faithful who were coming back from the Annual Zikr prayer in Bauchi State and heading to Ikare in Ondo State. Unfortunately, 22 persons were killed and 14 injured in the attack,” he said.

The attackers had reportedly ambushed an entourage of Muslim faithful returning from Islamic New Year prayers organised by Dahiru Bauchi, a Bauchi-based Islamic cleric.

They were passing through Jos when they ran into the gunmen who opened fire on them.

Ogaba also stated that prompt response from Police personnel led to the arrest of six suspects while 21 victims were rescued from the scene.

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“Upon receipt of the report, a team of Police personnel, the military and other sister agencies were immediately mobilised to the scene where 21 victims were rescued and six suspects arrested,” he said.

He explained that normalcy had returned to the area after high profile visits to the scene from ranking military and Police officers in the state.

“The Commissioner of Police, Plateau State Command, CP Edward Egbuka, along with the GOC 3-Division, Major General Ibrahim Ali, also visited the scene and ordered for a discreet investigation to fish out other perpetrators of this barbaric act at large.

“The CP warned that those that perpetrated this dastardly act and others that incited it, will be made to face the full wrath of the law,” he said.

Plateau State Governor Simon Lalong said that attacks on innocent citizens would never be tolerated in Plateau and the sponsors of such attacks would be dealt with to serve as a deterrent to others.

He commended security agencies for their swift response which led to the arrest of some suspects and the restoration of calm to the area.

Amos Abba is a journalist with the International Center for Investigative Reporting, ICIR, who believes that courageous investigative reporting is the key to social justice and accountability in the society.

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