A group of armed herdsmen injured an officer during an attack on a police convoy in Kirikassamma local government area of Jigawa State.
The police were sent in after the residents reported that some herdsmen had invaded their communities and were ravaging farms and stealing crops in the area.
Residents who spoke with Premium Times on Tuesday said the injured police officer was hit with arrows while some residents were also injured in the attack which occurred on Saturday. The police confirmed that the injured officer was taken away for treatment at Nguru General Hospital in neighbouring Yobe State.
Police spokesperson in Jigawa, Audu Jinjiri, said the officer was responding to treatment.
He said the herdsmen ambushed the police convoy after officers chased them from farms in the area.
A resident in the community, Ibrahim Bara’u, said the herdsmen are camped in Iyo and Gishinawa forest at the other side of a river which security agents had not been able to cross to engage the armed herdsmen.
The state’s chairman of Rice Farmers Association (AFAN), Usman Maiunguwa-Jaga, told PREMIUM TIMES on Tuesday that the herdsmen were still camped in the forest, taking advantage of the terrain.
The AFAN chairman said local farmers were preparing to confront the invaders until the security agents arrived after the governor was informed of the tension in the area.
He said the herdsmen relocated from Zamfara and Katsina states following a peace agreement with the state governments.
PREMIUM TIMES had reported how the influx of the herdsmen caused a panic in Miga Local Government Area of Jigawa. An official then said the herdsmen ”destroyed 18 rice and guinea corn farms” in the area.
Area calm after security reinforcement – Police
Mr Jinjiri said the police had sent in reinforcement and restored normalcy in the area.
“The police have been responding to distress calls from the communities. Apart from the conventional police officers, we also mobile officers in the communities.
“The herders are on transit in the area. Only the stubborn ones leave their camp to destroy farms. The police have sent officers there to protect lives and property,” He said.
Mr Jinjiri urged the residents not to take the law into their hands, adding, “we’re on top of the situation.”