Sylvanus Viashima, Jalingo
Some youths in Kona community, a suburb of Jalingo in Taraba State, in the early hours of Thursday confiscated 62 cows from some armed herdsmen who invaded Kona village.
Mr Innocent Shaukani, leader of the Kona youths who confiscated the cows told our correspondent that the invaders fired shorts in the air to scare residents of the village.
Shaukani, a farmer, said that it took courage and grace of God for them to evade bullets from the three herdsmen who invaded their community in the morning.
He also said that the herdsmen destroyed plenty of crops on their farms, insisting that the invaders must pay compensation for their destruction.
“We heard gunshots early this morning at 4.30 am and came out to see what was happening, and we discovered that three herdsmen with cows had taken over our farms. It was still dark so they couldn’t target an individual but they shot sporadically.
“On our part, we were many chasing them; and they might have felt we carried arms so they ran away leaving 62 cows which are under police custody now. We want whoever that owns those cows to pay compensation to those whose crops had been destroyed,” he said.
When our correspondent visited the village the 62 confiscated cows were confined in an uncomplicated building under the watch of some policemen and youths in Kona village.
The Chief of Kona, Kuru Augustine Njenmang, who confirmed the incident said that he made contact with the police to make sure that the authorities were involved and the law was allowed to take its course.
Njenmang called on the security agencies to ensure that the owner of the herds paid compensation for the crops they destroyed before the cows would be released to them.
According to him, “we are a peace-loving people and will not allow our youths to take the laws into their hands, that is why I am appealing to the government to ensure that herdsmen do not graze in villages they had burnt before so as to prevent unnecessary provocations.
The Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP David Misal, also confirmed the incident and said that the police had commenced investigation into the matter and would ensure that the needful was done.
Recall that some Kona communities in Jalingo recently came under heavy attacks by armed herdsmen killing several persons and burning houses.