President Muhammadu Buhari has expressed sadness over the killing of 19 persons in their sleep by suspected herdsmen in Ancha village, Plateau State, on Friday.
The President, in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity Garba Shehu, on Saturday described the killings as “senseless” and warned against a return of disorder in the state.
In what is believed to be reprisal over the beheading of one of their kith, a horde of suspected herdsmen invaded the village which is in the Bassa Local Government area of the state, killing everybody in sight, including children and women.
President Buhari, according to the statement, also “expressed disappointment at the disruption of peace and normalcy that have reasonably taken root in the state, and urged stakeholders not to allow this violent incident to destroy the progress made so far.”
He was quoted as saying: “It is unlawful of anyone or group to take the laws into their hands in the name of revenge or reprisals, rather than follow due process by allowing law enforcement agencies to fish out any such aggressors who will be made to face justice.”
According to President Buhari, “the various communities in the state have taken many steps, with the support of security agencies and mediators to pull the state back from the brink of anarchy and senseless killings warranted by attacks and counterattacks.”
He stressed that, “it will be a painful loss to allow these unsavoury acts to return. I urge all our communities in the state and the other parts of the country to embrace peace and bring to a stop these painful and unnecessary killings.”
The President further reiterated the determination of the Federal Government to protect the lives and property of all citizens, wherever they reside, while directing law enforcement agencies to apprehend the perpetrators of the Plateau killings and whoever their sponsors may be.
He prayed God to grant peace to the souls of the victims and comfort to the grieving families and community.