MEET FRANK OSHANUGOR
By Frank Oshanugor
The Irigwe Development Association (IDA) in Plateau State has disassociated its members from the attack on a convey of five buses of Muslims along Rukuba Road of Jos North on Saturday.
In a press statement on Saturday evening, the National Publicity Secretary of the Association, Mr. Davidson Malison, said “As every life is considered sacrosanct , inviolable and revered by God so, a Rigwe man respects and values human life.”
“As part of people who believe in oneness and sanctity of human life, we want to tow the path of humanity and peace by condemning the act of violence and skirmishes that occurred along Rukuba Road Jos today(14/8/2021) where some criminal elements engaged commuters in an ungodly act which led to several lost of lives.’
“We deeply sympathize with the families of those whose members were affected and pray for the quickest recuperation of the injured.
“However, we want to condemn in the strongest terms the sentimental, biased and unprofessional statement issued today by the Plateau State Command via the Police Public Relations Officer (PPPRO), ASP Ubah Gabriel Ogaba that “a group of attackers suspected to be Irigwe Youths and their mourners along Rukuba Road of Jos North attacked a convoy of five buses with Muslim faithful who were coming back from annual Zirk prayer in Bauchi State and heading to Ikare in Ondo State.”
The statement said that “it is a known fact that Rukuba Road as a cosmopolitan area does not only inhabit Rigwe people and so, the prompt and swift ethnic inclination or attachment is not only a display of partiality in the act of discharging duty but a demonstration of non-objectivity, sidedness, partisanship and prejudice against Rigwe people.”
“One would wonder the level of investigation and interrogation that have taken place in less than five hours to come out with the identity of culprits and perpetrators whereas it has taken them years to investigate yet no revelation of the identity of people who have terrorized and still terrorizing almost every part of Nigeria.”
It would be recalled that Rigwe nation has been under attack for more than three weeks and they have never issued a statement neither to attach an identity of the perpetrators in spite of numerous submission of names of suspects but have been comfortably using the profile “UNKNOWN GUNMEN”
‘Furthermore, viewing at the prompt arrival of the CP and GOC and the desired interests demonstrated with solid reiterated call for a swift investigation to bring out the perpetrators, but without such commensurate quickly and timely action taken and voice heard when the Rigwe people were attacked, killed, displaced, houses, food stuff including grown crops mowed down in days, just within the areas where the Headquarters and Barracks of the 3rd Armed Division is located, without such prompt action by the GOC and the CP, it had made them greatly suspicious culprits in the attacks and killings of the Rigwe people.”
“Let it also be known to the general public that the identity of the suspects the police claimed they arrested in connection with the killings of three Rigwe women on the 10th August ,2021 has not been released or publicised. The culprits must be faceless people or ghost even in police detention we think.”
“It’s on record that Rigwe people spent the day mourning and bidding final farewell to the six(6) out of over 70 people killed by Fulani militias and so had no time to engage in such unholy and nefarious act.”
The Association further stated, “To add, as peace-loving as Rigwe Person is , not taking laws into our hands has been something that our people have been well oriented and sensitized on and so, does not partake in acts that are capable of bringing disrepute to the Rigwe name, Plateau State and Nigeria.”
“While we still mourn and grief,we kindly ask the Police Command to withdraw such an unfounded statement that is capable of tarnishing and ruining the image of Rigwe people as well compound the sorrow state of the people and concentrate on consoling and pacifying the Rigwe people over the uncountable losses their lack of preventing the militias from attacking us has caused the nation.
“We strongly advise the Police and other Security Agencies to channel their energy and time in devising means of arresting those who have been fingered as the major people unleashing terrors in this nation rather than profiling a peaceful tribe with criminality.
“We finally want to use this medium to express our gratitude to all those who contributed and participated in one way or the other during today’s mass burial of our people,may God bless you infinitely.
“We also wish to thank the various security outfits in the state who distinguished themselves in their line of duty such as the Police, Operation Safe Haven, and the Operation Rainbow who were on ground from the Plateau Specialist Hospital to the burial ground to provide us with adequate security ensuring that the program went out well and successful.
“In the same vein, we urge all Rigwe people to continue to demonstrate that peaceful and calmed people we are known.”