Plateau killings: Disband STF now, HURIWA tells Jonathan

HURIWA condemned the Shonong killings.

A pro-democracy based non-governmental organisation, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, has condemned the killing of residents of Shonong Village in Riyom Local Government Area of Plateau.

The villagers are suspected to have been murdered by herdsmen, who razed 20 houses, according to security officials, and carted away several domestic animals.

The police said 17 people were killed in the Monday attack while residents said about 30 people were killed.

HURIWA described the killing as “barbaric, primitive, reprehensible, despicable and odious”.

The group demanded that the Federal Government rises to the occasion by ensuring that the suspected mass murderers are arrested, prosecuted and sanctioned in competent courts of law in compliance with section 6 of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria [as amended].

In a statement issued jointly by its National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko, and the National Media affairs director, Zainab Yusuf, HURIWA charged the Presidency to break the vicious cycle of carefully plotted killings of villagers and farmers all around the North central and North west states in the recent periods by alleged mercenaries suspected to be Fulani herdsmen.

Disband STF

HURIWA also asked President Jonathan to disband the Plateau state-based military task force, STF, and order the military in Plateau to be on the highest point of alert. The group advised the Plateau state government to set up community-based armed security outfits to be drawn from members of the various communities which will be supervised closely by the Plateau State security council and the presidency.

It advised that members of the state-wide community security patrol teams must be men and women with clean records whose fingerprints and complete personality data must be stored in a manner that will make it easy for the state government to trace their whereabouts.

The group said the inability of the STF in Plateau to uncover the gangs carrying out the incessant killings two years after deployment shows that it lacks the professional competence and discipline to put a stop to the ugly development.

It reminded the presidency of its earlier decision to begin the compilation of the various intra-communal and inter-communal killings that have happened in Plateau state since the advent of the current democratic dispensation with the objective of filing a petition in January 2015 at the International Criminal Court, ICC in the Hague, Netherlands.

The group charged President Jonathan to consult broadly with the hope of working out effective and efficient panacea to the cases of incessant mass violence in the affected states.

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