MBF youth wing to CNG: Stop demonising Irigwe over Jos killings

The youth wing of Middle Belt Forum (MBF) has decried what it called “the deliberate attempt at demonising the Irigwe ethnic nationality as perpetrators of the Jos killings by the Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG).

Speaking through a press statement signed by their representatives, Nasiru Jagaba,

Emmanuel Zopmal and Chris Aba on Sunday, the MBF youth wing condemned the press conference addressed by CNG on the recent attacks on travelers in Jos, Plateau State, last weekend in which it labeled Irigwe nationality as perpetrators.

“While we condemn the attacks and offer our heartfelt sympathies to victims and relations of the dead, we are appalled by CNG’s malevolent attempt at painting the unfortunate incident in religious and ethnic colouration.

“Middle Belt Youths are surprised that despite the intermittent coldblooded murders on the Plateau and other parts of the North, the group only found its voice when some elements attacked travellers. 

“It is on record that not only Plateau State but the entire North has been turned into a river of bloodshed, with hundreds of communities decimated and thousands of innocent citizens killed without a whimper from the group,” the youth stated.

According to the youth, “the deliberate attempt at demonising the Irigwe ethnic nationality as perpetrators of these killings has been orchestrated without any evidence. Not only were hundreds of homes reduced into rubble in five Irigwe communities, no fewer than 76 Irigwe persons were brutally murdered within a span of four days in the last two weeks without any attempt by the security forces to bring the killers to justice.

They said, “While these murderers have been enmeshed in destroying lives, homes and vast swathes of farmlands, the CNG embraced silence and looked the other way. The CNG seems to be available for the highest bidder and only found its voice when the victims of the Saturday attack turned out to be Fulani people. 

“That the CNG would quickly address the press on the incident and called for the arrest of Irigwe monarchs in the troubled areas shows that the group is engaged in fanning the embers of violence.”

 Specifically, the MBF youth wing said “there seems to be a veil over what truly happened in Jos last Saturday. If actually the travellers were coming from Bauchi, it is incongruous that instead of passing through Bauchi Road; what were their reasons for preferring the Rukuba Road leading to Miango where Irigwe people were engaged in mass burial of their members that were killed?”

They also called on the federal government to take a closer look at the comments credited to Bauchi, who threatened retaliation in the event the government failed to handle the matter, stressing that the government must be just to all sides if it is committed to dealing with insecurity in the country.