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Victims of Plateau killings were herdsmen, says Miyetti Allah

The Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) has denied killing anybody in Plateau state.

Casualties were recorded when suspected herdsmen invaded communities in three local government areas of the state last weekend.

The police had confirmed that 100 persons died in the attack which reportedly started on Saturday and ended Sunday.

TheCable visited some of the affected villages and discovered that residents have fled the area while the deceased have been buried.

Meanwhile, Mohammadu Nura, MACBAN chairman in the state, said the group did not attack residents.

He said those killed in the attack were herdsmen, adding that the group has confirmed that 19 of its members died while 73 others are missing.

“As at now, we have been able to bury 19 persons of our own in different places. We have declared 73 persons missing. We have not seen them nor their corpses. So people are taking our corpses, going around the world and telling people that it is their corpses that the Fulani killed,” he told TheCable.

“These corpses they are saying, they are propagating (doing propaganda) against us. They are our corpses. We are calling on the government to go and exhume the corpses, let us see their faces. The corpses are our corpses, I believe that.

“I (can) tell you with authority that we have not taken part in the killings. No herdsman killed anybody. If they say they are Fulanis, let them produce those Fulanis, we want to see them.”

He said the herdsmen have been on “the receiving end” of the crisis in the state, and have been “chased away from many villages”.

“In most of the villages, Fulanis were chased out. It was when fragile peace was returning that people started coming back,” he said.

Asked if he knows those who carried out the attacks, Nura said: “The police are in a good position to tell you who carried out these killings. Because there is tension in Plateau, their eyes must be everywhere. So their personnel must be everywhere.”

Ibrahim Idris, inspector-general of police, has sent special forces to the state in a bid to fish out the attackers.

The military had paraded some suspects accused of carrying out the act.

President Muhammadu Buhari had condemned the incident and also vowed to bring the killers to book.

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