Eight people, including a teenage girl were reportedly killed yesterday in a fresh communal clash between the Jukuns and Hausas in Ibi Local Government Area of Taraba State.
Also, no fewer than 40 houses, vehicles and other properties worth millions of naira were destroyed in the bloody clash which erupted at about 4.30a.m. but was later brought under control by a combined team of soldiers and police that were drafted to the area to maintain peace.
The clash is coming barely two months after a violent clash between the two warring groups claimed several lives and property thereby necessitating a permanent deployment of security men comprising the army and mobile policemen to the town to forestall future breakdown of peace in the community.
Confirming the incident, the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), ASP Joseph Kwaji told Thisday that trouble started in the town when a man (who was later identified by residents as Emmanuel) was attacked and robbed of N200,000 at about 5:30p.m. on Wednesday on his way from Wukari where he had gone to withdraw money for the treatment of his father.
“At about 5:30p.m. on Wednesday, a man from Ibi who went to Wukari to withdraw money for the treatment of his father who has been sick for sometime was attacked by unknown persons who robbed him of the N200,000 and collected his handset on his way coming back to Ibi.”
“And at about 4:30a.m. today (Thursday), Ibi residents were woken by the sounds of gunshots that rented the air as there were sporadic shootings in the town but the situation was promptly brought under control by security operatives including army personnel,” he said.
Kwaji, who attributed the success of security operatives in bringing the situation under control to the prompt and timely intervention of the security personnel, further revealed that 14 people had been arrested while two AK 47 riffles had also been recovered from the suspects.
The PPRO, who disclosed that the area was being closely monitored, however, declined to provide the casualty figures, saying the command was yet to receive any official casualty figure though residents insist that eight people were killed in the clash. [Thisday]