Taraba: Taming A Fresh Hotbed Of Terrorism

Taraba: Taming A Fresh Hotbed Of Terrorism
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Taraba State may be turning into another fertile ground for terrorists’ activities following the mass influx of fleeing bandits from Zamfara State in the wake of the perceived current clampdown on the group by security forces since its being pronounced as terrorists groups in the Nigerian state.

AljazirahNigeria had reported that in the past few months, large number of persons suspected to be bandits from Zamfara State have continued to flood Gassol and Bali Local Government Areas thereby creating concerns.


With the presence of the bandits and the astronomical increase in cases of kidnappings, robbery and other heinous crimes, residents are now living in a routine life of restrictions to avoid any horrible and life threatening encounter with the bandits.

Between December 2 and 5, 2021 no fewer than 11 persons were reported to have been kidnapped in Gora village and the surrounding villages in Gassol District. According to the sources, the kidnapped victims were being held in anticipation of a favourable response by their relations to the ransom demanded by the criminals. The situation is not different at Armar village in Karim-Lamido Local Government of the state, a settlement that shares a border with Gassol. The village head of Amar, Alhaji Abdulkadir Suleiman, was reported to have been kidnapped along with seven others by the bandits.

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The litany of kidnaps did not spare only civilians as a police inspector was kidnapped near Yerima village but escaped death by the whiskers after four days in captivity in the den of the bandits as he reportedly escaped at night when his captors were deep asleep at about 2:30am on November 26, 2021. “About 30 persons are being held captive in the bush near Garin Mallam Garba in Gassol. They have over 70 motorcycles which they stole at gunpoint from their victims. Also recently, a group of bandits invaded Binari village in Karim-Lamido Local Government Area also bordering Gassol LGA, leaving on their trail 13 persons dead and two villages razed.

Police in Taraba State have confirmed the kidnapping of the children of the former Commissioner for Justice and Attorney General of the state, Gibon Timothy Kataps by unknown gunmen just recently. The Police Public Relations Officer ,PPRO, of the Command, Usman Abdullahi, who confirmed the kidnap said the children alongside a police officer were snatched on Wednesday afternoon along Jamtari, Gayam road in Gashaka Local Government council of the state.

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The police officer escorting the family of the former Commissioner was said to have sustained gun wounds following the attack.

To underscore the severity of the situation, the state governor himself, reflected on the enormity of the security challenges as he accused traditional rulers in the state of being “neck-deep” in their support for the terrorist groups, threatening to dethrone any traditional ruler found harbouring the criminals.

We are informed that the gravity of the security challenges are under-reported and daunting and are escalating beyond the capacity of the local authorities. This calls for a review of the security apparatchik in the state to withstand the apparently menacing situation.

It became more apprehensive about the security situation in the state when an invading army of neighbouring Cameroonian separatist groups by the appellation Ambazonians overran a Nigerian territory, killing and destroying properties in the guise of protecting a selfish interest in that border community.

We are aware that there is no visible presence of the Nigerian military in some of these neighbouring towns whose presence alone could be a deterrence to would-be intruders, hence leaving citizens to their own faith.

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AljazirahNigeria aligns its thoughts with analysts who see Taraba State as too strategic to be allowed to be overrun by terrorists and foreign vandals in whatever guise. Apart from sharing several border points with Cameroon, it is one of the states in the North East which has been over the years insulated from attacks of terrorists until these recent incursions.

With a large farming population and two gigantic power projects in the state, we urge that no price paid by the Federal Government to keep terrorists and foreign invaders at bay would too much.

Governments at all levels must synergise to nip in the bud this upsurge of threats to this once relatively peaceful state. This even so imperative so as to avoid likely spill-over to neighbouring states which equally have been isolated from these ignoble assailants?


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