Ombatse Traditionalists: The Killing of 95 Policemen in Nasarawa state was in Retaliation

Before we start castigating the Police for being weak enough to allow themselves to be rounded up and killed by a group of villagers, let’s remember that we are talking about an ill-equipped, un-trained, and poorly paid group. I do not think our security forces take pride in constantly losing to the opponent. Years of neglect have brought Nigeria‘s Police and Army to their knees and the entire nation needs to support our security forces and ask government with one voice, what is being done to turn this tide? I do not think when we talk about upgrading now we should worry just about arms. What about intelligence? What about adequate and regular training? What about remuneration? People placed in positions of authority and trust frequently make of with monies intended for the betterment of these officers lives and frequently getting off scott-free. It’s just not right. There must be a turn around. Some of what we refer to as terrorist attacks are mere situations of security breach that could even have been PREVENTED were the Police well equipped. We need the government of the day to wake up to its responsibility and do what is right please.

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    A man who admits to being an Ombatse traditionalist in Nasarawa State has reported that their group killed 95 policemen, nearly four times the 23 the police have admitted.  

    photo

    Nigeria’s Inspector General of Police,
    Mohammed Dahiru Abubakar

    Earlier, Abayomi Akeremale, the State Police Commissioner, said, “The Ombatse gunmen opened fire on our men, killing 23 and burning them,” Nassarawa state police chief said, adding that 17 officers remain missing.

    Akeremale said the security forces decided to arrest some Ombatse leaders after they received reports that they were embarking on forced conversions in the village of Elakyo, near Lafia, the Nassarawa capital.

    Speaking through an interpreter on the phone, the traditionalist denied shooting at the policemen, saying his group responded only with machetes and knives, not bullets, and only after the police had killed nine of their members.

    Denying that they have been committing force conversions in mosques and churches, he said the policemen arrived in 12 patrol trucks and opened fire on his group.

    “We were in our place performing our rites, when our members alerted us that police may come for our father and leader,” he said.  “Suddenly that day, the armed police came with guns and what happened? They did not answer us but started spraying teargas on us and killed nine of our members. In self defence we killed 95 of them, we have no guns it was machetes that we used in defending ourselves and eventually killed them. There was nothing like gun attacks.”

    On attacking mosques and churches, the sect member, first pointing out he has not been instructed to speak, denied the reports.

    “We don’t do that,” he told our reporter.  “Our group is serious about morality, we are against liquor and don’t harbour it, no sleeping with men and no stealing. We are on our own seeking protection for our own people, and the police just attacked us.”

     

    Culled from naij.com

     

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