Late-night grazing by suspected Fulani herdsmen reportedly led to extensive damage to over 20 farmlands in the Tanjol and Vwak communities within the Riyom Local Government Area of Plateau State.
Barrister Solomon Mwantiri, from Nigeria’s Emancipation Centre for Crisis Victims (ECCVN), confirmed the unfortunate attack on Bitrus Danbwarang, a resident of the Vwak community in Jol village, who was tragically shot dead by suspected Fulani militias on the morning of July 17, 2023.
Mwantiri, in a conversation with the Daily Sun Newspaper, said, “Fulani militias attacked and fatally shot Mr. Danbwarang of Vwak in Jol, Riyom LGA road in the morning. In addition, we received reports of extensive farmland destruction that occurred last night in Tanjol and Vwak, with more than 20 properties affected.”
The incident followed an early warning intelligence report indicating possible ambushes at various locations within the general Council areas, including the affected communities.
“Yesterday, we documented severe farmland destruction at Tanjol and Vwak in the Jol community, and at Gwon, Wereng-Rim, and additional villages in the Riyom LGA. Over 20 farmlands were extensively damaged or grazed on,” Mwantiri added.
This pattern of farmland destruction has become distressingly commonplace amidst the ongoing unrest in Plateau state’s troubled local government areas.
Jerry Datim, from the Human Right and Rescue Operation, expressed his concern about the escalating farm destruction by suspected Fulani herdsmen who have shifted their operations to the night.
He explained, “The herdsmen have altered their tactics. They no longer operate during daylight. They infiltrate people’s farms around 7 to 8pm, allowing their cattle to graze until 5am, depending on the farm’s size. However, we have reported this to the new Commander, who has assured us that he will take appropriate action against any grazing violations, and we have already seen him take action.”
IMAGE: The Sun