The Chairman of Wukari Local Government Area in Taraba State, Daniel Adi, on Sunday confirmed that no fewer than 10 people have been killed and several others injured in the ongoing clashes between Jukun and Tiv ethnic groups on the fringes of Benue and Taraba States.
Adi, who called for calm further disclosed that about 10 communities have so far been burnt down around Kente ward of the council area.
“As I am talking to you now several households, including Government Day Secondary School (GDSS) Kente, were burnt down by the attackers in the early hours of today.
“I made efforts to contact my counterpart in Ukum Local Government in Benue State to appeal to his people to lay down their arms and embrace peace”, Adi said.
He disclosed that the local government was footing the bills of several injured persons currently receiving treatment at the Wukari General Hospital.
Meanwhile, David Kente, a former APC governorship aspirant, who hails from the area, has condemned the wanton destruction of lives and property.
He described the crisis as unfortunate, adding that the Tiv and Jukuns in Kente have coexisted peacefully for many years after their first clashes in 1991.
He appealed to both the Tiv and Jukuns to embrace peace and sheath their sword, promising that all those who lost their property to current crisis on both sides of the borders of Benue and Taraba would be compensated.
“You see this is achievable because after the 1991 clashes between the two ethnic groups in Kente area I single handedly provided succour to all the affected communities by providing roofing sheets, cement and related building materials.
“I also dug boreholes to the affected communities both on the Benue side and Taraba”.
When contacted the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) to the Taraba Police Command, David Misal, confirmed the ongoing clashes.
He said after the death of two persons at the initial stage of the crisis on April 01, 2019, the police was yet to ascertain the actual casualty figure.
He however disclosed that the command has deployed additional officers and men to restore peace and order in the area.