Sylvanus Viashima, Jalingo
The Chairman of Gassol Local Government Council in Taraba State, Mr Tanko Maikarfi, has called on the state government to support local hunters and vigilantes to tackle cases of kidnapping and similar crimes in the state.
Maikarfi, a former Deputy Speaker of the Taraba State House of Assembly, told reporters at his office that cases of kidnapping and armed robbery were on the rise because security personnel lack the knowledge of the hideouts of the criminals.
On a different note, the council chairman said that the tension between Tiv and Jukun in Dan-Anacha over the change of name of a village to Kwararafa by Governor Darius Ishaku has also been brought under control.
Maikarfi, however, said the place has been placed on red alert over the leadership tussle over who controls the yam market in the area.
He lamented that Gassol, which according to him has the capacity to top revenue generation in the northeastern state, was underperforming as a result of insecurity.
“The issue of insecurity is a serious challenge for me and the state in general. Just yesterday in my village, five persons were kidnapped alongside two motorcycles, but the vigilantes and hunters rescued them,” he said.
“There is another case of kidnapping that the local vigilantes and hunters are trailing. The truth of the matter is that soldiers, police and civil defence officers don’t know the bushes and the hideouts of these criminals like the hunters and the vigilante people.
“A joint operation involving the hunters, vigilantes and security personnel will help in addressing the problem and we must support them as a government.
“I want to call on the Taraba State government to come out with a strong vigilante team and support them with local weapons to fight insecurity in the state.
“Each community should be allowed to recruit people within the community who are of good conduct to police their community. The community support and engagement will yield the desired result,” he said.
Maikarfi, who boasted of his achievements within his short time in office, noted that if the security of the local government improves, it will help in spurring the needed development for the people of Gassol.