The STF had claimed that 16 people died in the attack
The families of the victims of the Shonong, Riyom Local Government Area attack on Tuesday refused the official death figures brandished by the police in the state.
The families of the victims said 33 people died and were given a mass burial on Tuesday evening, amidst wailing and crying.
The STF had said 16 people died in the attack; they also urged the public to disregard figures published in the media.
A community leader of Shonong Village, Ilya Vomagai, who spoke to journalists shortly after the mass burial said the attackers were armed with sophisticated weapon.
The community leader said most of the victims were women, children and old people because they could not defend themselves or run for their lives.
PREMIUM TIMES gathered that the attack lasted for close to three hours before the arrival of men of the STF whose outpost was less than five kilometres away from the scene of the attack.
Most residents of the community have deserted the area and have taken refuge in neighbouring villages.
The Plateau State Government has also condemned the killings.
In a statement, the Commissioner of Information and Communication, Yiljap Abraham, described the attack as a barbaric act.
He said, “It is becoming increasingly apparent that the attackers’ tactic is to displace communities and ultimately occupy their homes by striking them with terror and unwarranted fury. These will not succeed due to security measures being taken and increased community vigilance.
“The Plateau State Government, working with the various security structures on ground are adopting extra measures to defeat this emerging insurgency that aims at decimating and displacing communities, then occupy their land”.
Mr. Abraham appealed to the Plateau people to be alert and work with security agencies to keep Plateau safe.
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