The Taraba State Government and Social Cultural Groups in the State on Sunday rejected the report of the Army Panel that investigated the allegations of military collusion with armed bandits to kill Nigerians leveled against the Military by Retd. Lt. Gen TY Danjuma.
The Senior Special Assistant to the Governor of Taraba State on Media and Publicity, Mr. Bala Dan-Abu told our correspondent in a telephone interview on Sunday that the State Government rejected the report in its entirety.
Bala noted that what the army did was simply to take the position of a judge in their own case.
“The allegations were made against the army and what we expected them to do was to set up an independent panel to investigate the allegations and not to assemble their men to give them justice in their own case.
“The Army should set up a judicial commission of inquiry to investigate the allegations if they must be taken seriously.
“The allegations against the army of colluding with armed herdsmen to kill Nigerians was not only made by Retd Lt. Gen. TY Danjuma and the Taraba State government, but Amnesty International too accused the Army of complicity in the killings, so they cannot deny that.
“The Army were the ones that set up the committee, provided term of reference and received the report from the panel. No one was invited to review the report of the panel. They sat on the report and came up with their findings, so what do you expect,” he queried.
On his part, National Youth Leader of Jukun Development Association, Mr. Zando Hoku rejected the report describing it as a window dressing to appease the powers that be.
“We the Jukuns have rejected the report. However, we are not surprised at the report because we saw it coming.
“The evidence of collusion is so glaring for all to see. We are on ground and we knew all that had happened, but the Army was the judge in their case and they did what was pleasing to them,” he said.
On his own part, President-General of Tiv Cultural and Social Association Taraba State chapter Chief Goodman Dahida, reacting to the Army Panel report on the alleged collusion which absorbed the army of any wrongdoing, said the army is deceiving the world.
According to him, the army were the ones that were accused of colluding with bandits to kill Nigerians and wondered why they still presided over the investigation.
“They first denied the allegations before setting up the panel which was an afterthought.
“We expected the army to have set up an independent joint civil and serving army committee to investigate the allegations to proof to Nigerians and the world the truth of the allegations or otherwise.
“We reject the report and call on the Army to revisit the allegations which were not just in Taraba, but also in other states of the federation,” he said.
Dahida said the international community is watching happenings in Nigeria and called on the Army authorities to rebrand their image and rebuild confidence in the minds of Nigerians by doing the right thing.