Unending attacks, killings in Bachama Land

From Austin Ajayi,Yola

Despite efforts by the leadership of Bachama, Batta and Fulani (Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria and Tabithal Pulaaku to address cases of farmers and herders clashes in Numan, Lamurde and Demsa areas, attacks and killings still persist unabated.

Two Bwatiye sons were separately attacked, leaving one dead and the other badly injured, just a day after a peace meeting convened by the Hama Bachama, Homun Daniel Shaga Ismaila (OON) in his palace to mediate between Fulani and Bachama/Batta communities.

One of the victims Mr. Kennedy Bitrus who narrowly escaped death following his attack on Friday by herdsmen, was on his way from Mayo Lope, ( in Lau local government area of Taraba state) to Bang when he was attacked by the marauders with sophisticated weapons and is currently receiving medical attention at a health facility in Numan, Adamawa state.

A day later, on Saturday 17th October 2020, the herdsmen again attacked the youth leader ( Kpalagbe) of Nega Community of Bolki Ward Mr. David Titus whom they shot dead on his way from Bang.

Recall that the Numan Federation of Adamawa state North-Eeast Nigeria, has suffered series of farmers-herders crisis as well as activities of outright criminals resulting in perennial conflicts, loss of lives and property, as well as strained relationships.

Inability to resolve this lingering misunderstanding in a fruitful and mutually beneficial manner through dialogue, underscores the claims of the warring communities as the basis for the series of attacks between the two parties who had hitherto lived together peacefully.

Worried by these incessant conflicts and absence of any meaningful development in the area, the Hama Bachama Dr. Daniel Shaga Ismaila (OON), and his colleague the Hama Batta, Homun Alhamdu Gladstone Teneke, have been holding series of discussions with the leadership of Fulani and the Bachama/ Batta communities, to find lasting solutions to the problem, as well as complement the efforts of the Adamawa state Governor, Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri, in bringing lasting peace to the area.

In the meeting, the Bachama monarch Dr. Daniel Shaga Ismaila (OON), condemned the attack on the entire settlement, as well as setting it ablaze on basis that one member of the community had rustled their cattle. This approach according to him is not a civilised one and is not acceptable.

He also said it is wrong for any Bachama to take the law into his hands either by rustling cattle or by killing it.

Dr. Shaga appealed to both parties to try and restrain their people and to look ahead to the gains that lie ahead as the parties work together to midwife a mutually beneficial peace process.

As it stands now, the troubled community members testified that the arms wielding herdsmen still go about grazing on people’s farms unhindered around the boundaries between Lau of Taraba State and those of Numan and Demsa in Adamawa State.

Until the security agents intervene, people living in the affected areas will continue to live in fear of the unknown and the relative peace hitherto enjoyed in the area remains in limbo.

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