1 killed, 50 houses razed as Gombe residents fight over farmland

Gombe State government on Monday said a communal clash between Shongom and Filiya districts over farmland had resulted in the death of one person and the burning of over 50 houses.

The state’s Commissioner of Information and Culture, Julius Ishaya stated this at a briefing after a Security Council meeting in Gombe.

He stated that the clash, which took place on Saturday, May 29, left one woman dead and no fewer than 50 houses, food and other essential items burnt.

Mr Ishaya said the state government condemned the attack and called on members of the affected communities to embrace peace, while directing the immediate engagement of all residents, led by the Mai Kaltungo, Saleh Mohammed, to find solutions and restore lasting peace in the affected areas.

“The council reiterated that the banning of militias or hunters’ groups still stands and all security agencies have been alerted in that regard,’’ he said.

He said that the government had also asked leaders of the affected communities to meet with their youths as part of measures to prevent further escalation of the clash.

Also speaking, Adamu Dishi, the state’s Commissioner of Internal Security and Ethical Orientation, said the affected areas were now calm as peace had been restored.

Mr Dishi said security operatives in the state had been directed to fish out those responsible for the clashes, “as crises do not erupt on their own, so that the perpetrators would be dealt with according to the laws of the land”.

Saleh Mohammed, the Mai Kaltungo, appealed for calm, stating that peace was needed for the emirate to make meaningful development and progress.

The Commissioner of Police in Gombe, Ishola Babaita, confirmed to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that there was a clash between Shongom and Filiya Districts.

Mr Babaita said that the police on receiving the report on Sunday, May 30, deployed its personnel to prevent further breakdown of law and order.

He added that peace had been restored to the affected areas and his men were still patrolling the areas to ensure the maintenance of law and order.

He confirmed that one death was recorded and no fewer than 50 houses razed, saying that those involved in the crisis would be brought to book as soon as investigations were concluded.

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