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9 killed, houses burnt in Plateau communal clash

At least nine persons have been reportedly killed during a communal clash between the Montol and Taroh ethnic groups in the Ponglong community, Mikang Local Government Area of Plateau State. 

The transition chairman of the council, Hon. Daniel Kungmi, who confirmed the incident, said the clash, which started between two persons, later escalated and was hijacked by irate youths and criminals. 

According to sources from the area, the clash also led to the burning of many houses and barns and the displacement of many residents, especially women. 

Our correspondent gathered that the clash, which started around 6 pm on Saturday, was caused by a dispute over farmland between members of the two aggrieved ethnic groups. 

The sources added that though security operatives had been deployed to the affected community to restore normalcy, criminals used the opportunity to rustle cattle. 

The council chairman further explained that “Within a short while, the situation degenerated leading to the burning down of houses and barns. Several criminal elements took advantage of the unfortunate situation and rustled cattle. 

“Immediately we got the news of the clash, we called on security operatives who moved swiftly to the affected community to restore law and order. 

“I just returned from the community and the situation is under control but we cannot ascertain the number of persons killed in the clash. I call on the people to be more tolerant and cautious of undesirable elements that might want to take advantage of the unfortunate situation to inflict harm on innocent persons,” the chairman added. 

The spokesperson for the state police command, DSP Alabo Alfred, did not respond to the inquiry by our correspondent as of the time of filing this report last night.

 

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