Sylvanus Viashima, Jalingo
Chief Augustine Njenmang, Paramount Ruler of the Kona people of Taraba, has appealed to the government to rehabilitate victims of recent herdsmen attacks on Kona communities in Jalingo and Ardo Kola local councils in Taraba State.
Njenmang made the appeal Saturday while interacting with he newsmen in Jalingo on the herder-farmer crisis in Kona, a suburb of Jalingo local government area.
The traditional ruler decried the devastation caused by the ongoing crisis, adding that the displaced people were still living in deplorable conditions in internally displaced persons (IDP) camps and could not even go back to their farms as a result of the siege of their lands by herdsman-raiders.
He noted that the early return and rehabilitation of victims to their places of origin is expedient in order to avoid impending food crisis in the area and the state generally.
“Our people are itching to go back to continue with their economic activities, but the attackers are still killing people. We have lost 64 people to the crisis already. It is regrettable that they continue to stay in camps because this would cause food shortage in the state,” the ruler said.
He called on the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to expedite action to provide relief materials to the people and called on the Federal Government to provide “unbiased security to enable the people return home to continue with their lives.”
While commending church based organisations for supporting IDPs with food and other relief materials, the traditional ruler appealed to other charitable Nigerians to also assist the domestic refugees.
Sunday Sun, whose correspondent visited the IDP camp in Kona Garo, reports that the camp accommodates many peasant youths who are mostly farmers.
Kona communities within Jalingo and Ardo Kola local governments have recently come under heavy and sustained attacks from armed herdsman raiders for over two months.