Taraba Police Command has vowed to arrest and prosecute the suspected herdsmen, who killed three police officers and two members of the local vigilante in Bujum Kasuwa village, Lau Local Government Area, on Thursday.
The Police Public Relations Officer of the command, ASP David Misal, stated this in Jalingo on Friday.
The Command had earlier confirmed the death of the police officers and vigilante personnel, who were attacked by suspected herdsmen in Bujum Kasua village on Thursday in Lau local government area of the state.
The team of five policemen led by an ASP was on its way in response to a distress call following a report of sporadic shooting in the area when they were attacked.
Misal explained that three of the five police officers and two members of the vigilante group were killed, while two guns and ammunition were carted away by the assailants.
He gave the name of the ASP who led the team as Kilobas Iliya.
Iliya was also a Divisional Crime Officer (DCO) of the force.
“While on their way, the team came under an ambush by gunmen, leading to the death of the DCO, two other officers and two members of the vigilante group.
“The assailants also made away with one AK47 Rifle and a service pistol.
“The Commissioner of Police, David Akinremi, has now ordered the deployment of a strong team led by the DCP in charge of investigation and intelligence, DCP Musa Baba, to the area.
“The team is to investigate the incident and ensure that the culprits are apprehended and brought to justice.
“The Commissioner wishes to extend his heartfelt condolences to the families of the fallen heroes and warned all criminal elements with the guts to attack Police officers to brace up for a battle that they have never had,” Misal said.
He said the Commissioner had also called on the public to avail the force with any useful information that would lead to the apprehension of those that perpetrated the killings.
A former Chairman of Lau local government area, Nelson Banka, who accompanied the corpse to Jalingo also confirmed the incident, alleging the attackers were herdsmen.
According to him: “There was a distress call by members of the community about a kidnap. The DPO responded to that by sending the divisional crime officer and two other police officers.
“They came into Bujum village through Mayo-Lope, and after dispersing members of the community at the end of a meeting, some men from nowhere who clearly are herdsmen ambushed them and killed the Divisional crime officer and two other policemen and two vigilantes.”
Banka lamented that the wake of crisis in Lau Local Government Area since January has left some villages in Abarre B ward empty and is becoming worrisome.
“At the moment, about five villages are totally deserted because most of the houses there have been looted by these same people whom we have always called the government and security agencies to see how they can come to our rescue.
“It seems the security agencies are also handicapped, and as it stands we have left everything in the hand of God. We will no longer be blaming the security personnel or the government anymore because our fate is in the hand of God,” he said.