The Taraba State Governor, Darius Ishaku has refuted media figures for casualties in the last crisis on the Mambilla Plateau and has disclosed that a total of 264 persons were confirmed to have been killed.
The governor made this disclosure on Wednesday, during a stakeholders meeting and distribution of relief materials to victims of the crises in Gembu, headquarters of Sardauna LGA of Taraba State.
According to the Governor, the Assessment Committee which visited 53 communities in the area, has discovered that 264 people were killed and not the over 1000 as reported by the media. He added that 209 people were displaced, 19,464 cattle, 6071 sheep as well as one tea processing plant, among others were burnt.
The Governor then sounded a note of warning to the people of Mambilla and Tarabans to “exercise restraint”, while also urging all to be law abiding and consult traditional rulers on any propaganda going around.
He also stated that the creation of chiefdoms in the area was a deliberate policy for reducing tension.
Ishaku called on people of the area to reciprocate the good gesture showed to them by the people of Cameroon when they hosted them during their difficulties, by accommodating them now that they (Cameroon citizens) are seeking refuge in Nigeria.
He, therefore, acknowledged Aliko Dangote for donating N50 million relief funds and promised to use the funds to build a Health Centre in the crisis area.
Earlier on in his speech, Taraba State Deputy Governor, Haruna Manu, who led a committee to Cameroon to look into the issue of refugees, commended Gov. Ishaku for his efforts at solving the crises in the area.
He regretted the fact that while his committee was trying to reconcile the warring communities, another crisis erupted in March 2018.
Meanwhile, Chairman of the Assessment Committee of the Mambilla crises, His Highness, Emmanuel Njiwah, The Tambon Mambilla, His Highness, Alhaji Shehu Audu Baju 2 and Speaker, Taraba State House of Assembly, Abel Diah, all praised the Governor for his efforts at returning peace to the troubled area.
However, the Speaker who is also Chairman of Sardauna Stakeholders Forum warned that “in as much as we will not stop those from Cameroon from entering Nigeria, they must have respect for the laws of the country”.
Highlights of the occasion were the presentation of cheques to victims of the crises by Gov. Darius Ishaku.