Defence & Security

Taraba security worsens, soldiers, police now bandits’ targets

By Suru Charles, Jalingo

• Government abandons citizens for 2023 elections

The security situation in Taraba State is growing worse on a daily basis with uniform men becoming bandits’ prime targets, The Trumpet reports.

This was lucidly demonstrated last week when no fewer than seven soldiers were killed in an ambushed by bandits in Karim-Lamido Local Government Council.

The killing of the seven soldiers came barely two months after six soldiers and a mobile policeman were gruesomely murdered in Tati village of Takum Local Government.

Apart from the security personnel whose lives are being wasted by bandits, who have taken over the entire forests surrounding the State, our correspondent learned that the lives of innocent citizens are as well going down the drain daily in Taraba with no help in sight.

Recall that over 30 members of the Reform Church of Christ for Nations (RCCN) were recently slaughtered in night attacks by militias at Kwenten and other communities in Ussa Local Government Council of the State.

The same goes with the Muslim worshippers, as several numbers of them were noticed to have been abducted from different Mosques during the just-concluded Ramadan.

The bandits who have been having a field day in the state know no religion or tribe as members of both religions have continued to fall prey to their attacks.

Leaders assigned with the responsibility of building walls of protection around their subjects seem to have failed in their responsibilities, as the people have begun to seek alternative areas of domicile and protection.

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While the bandits have continued to make life more cumbersome and burdensome for the people, the leadership of the State that ought to show concern for the lives being wasted daily were noticed to have been busy plotting how to achieve their political ambitions in 2023.

Though the security personnel, especially the police and soldiers, are putting in their best, however, their best seems not to be good enough, as the much-desired support, especially in the area of logistics, has not been forthcoming from both the state and the federal governments.

Piqued by what is happening in the State, a third Republic senator, Ibrahim Goje, who was not comfortable with the way and manner Governor of the State, Darius Dickson Ishaku is handling governance by dabbling into the traditional institution affairs of Gassol council, beckoned at the governor to concentrate in addressing the security challenges bedevilling the state.

Some of the Council Chairmen who also admitted that their councils are gradually being overtaken by bandits are caps in hands seeking help from governments at the state and federal levels.

The Trumpet gathered that the help, which is not forthcoming has compelled some of them to relocate to Jalingo, the State capital.

One of the Council Chairmen who spoke with our correspondent on the condition of anonymity admitted that he now oversees the affairs of his council from Jalingo, the State capital.

“Though I am aware that even Jalingo is not safe, I still prefer here to my Local Government Council because of the numbers of security operatives we have here,” he said.

The council boss who also agreed that the state government is not doing enough to arrest the situation, also felt sad that the government at the centre has on its part “neglected Taraba because it is not an APC state.”

While those who have the well wither, have begun to relocate from their areas of domicile to Jalingo metropolis, the Have-Not, whom the government of the day seems not to be bothered about, have on their parts resolved to seek help from the local Vigilantes who are as well doing their best.

Reeling out the numerous efforts so far put in place to checkmate the activities of bandits, the State Commissioner of Police, CP Abimbola Shokoya, said their efforts have begun to yield results, as some suspects that are allegedly connected to the various bomb explosion in the state have been arrested.

According to him, a 37-year-old man, who specialized in making bombs has been nabbed by the men of the command.

Shokoya, who also spoke on the mapped-out strategies to frustrate bandits from resurrecting their ugly heads during and after the Sallah celebration, said over 3,500 officers and men of the Command have been deployed to ensure a hitch-free celebration.

Reiterating his determination that the Sallah celebration will “be peaceful in Taraba”, he beckoned at the people not to hesitate to reach out to the security operatives with genuine information that would assist the security agencies to track down the bandits.

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