How soldiers, Civilian JTF looted our villages, set them ablaze: Victims

Posted by Sadiq Abubakar/Maiduguri | 13 June 2017 | 1,337 times

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•Burning Borno settlement.

The residents of Ali Dawari ward in Borno State have accused soldiers and Civilian JTF of looting their foodstuff, livestock and other properties after chasing them away on Sunday.

They also accused them of setting the village on fire to cover up their atrocities.

Addressing journalists on Monday, one of the four village heads affected, Alhaji Bulama Goni Ali Dawari of Bulama village said all efforts to draw the attention of the unit commander of the soldiers around the area through the chairman of the Civilian JTF failed as the commander did not pick his call on three occasions.

He disclosed that six eyewitnesses saw soldiers and Civilian JTF in their vehicles with loots from the village passing through the only route to and from the village, while the village was burning.

The residents threatened to drag the soldiers and civilian JTF to court if no action or compensation was paid to them. They also want their belongings and livestock recovered from the looters.

According to Bulama, the villagers have the right to seek redress over the sacking of their villages by the soldiers.

We are shocked and surprised by the action of the soldiers and the civilian JTF. Instead of protecting us they looted our properties and burn down our villages three days after Boko Haram attacked us,” he said.

The Bulama village spokesman disclosed that the four village heads or Bulamas made efforts to contact the LGC Chairman, Abubakar Mai Deribe who was in Potiskum and the BOSHA member, Alhaji Aji Kolo Ibrahim Kadi who had gone for the lesser hajj in Saudi Arabia, but all to no avail.

The Chairman of APC in Jere LGA, Alhaji Baba Usman Alhaji, however advised them to approach the human rights commission and NUJ to lodge their complaints.

He said copies of their written complaints have already been served the GOC 7 Division NA Maiduguri, Theater Commander, Operation Lafiya Dole, Garrison Commander, 7 Division, NA Maiduguri and the State Commissioner of Police, CP Damian Chukwu.

The letter reads: “Complaints of burning houses and looting of properties against security personnel in Ali Dawafi Village after the insurgency. We are four village heads of the above mentioned area and wish to forward our complaints on the activities and role played by the security operatives in the area after the attack on our village that occurred on Wednesday, 7th June 2017 at 6 pm.

“When the attack ended, some security personnel under the command of Captain Saudi took over the security and control of the entire village, the remaining persons were chased out by the soldiers who looted our properties and burnt our houses. As at Sunday, 11th June 2017 our houses were still burning.

“We vividly saw three army trucks loaded with our food items, personal effects moving out of the village both during the day and night.

“The following day, on Thursday, 8th June 2017, we came to beg them to enable us gather and collect the dead bodies of our relatives that were killed during the attack. They refused us entry to the village. After several pleadings, they allowed us but refused to escort us. It was the civilian JTF that escorted us with our ambulance to gather the corpses before we buried them.

“So, we are surprised and amazed that when the insurgents were coming to attack us, we inform the Chairman of the Civilian JTF who called the phone number of the security officer in charge three times but he did not pick his phone. Right now, we are counting our losses, including our cultivated farm land and domestic animals that were completely destroyed.

We are compelled to write to you because of the security lapses and the humiliation meted on us as law abiding citizens of Borno State.

“We urge you to carry out a full scale investigation and we demand compensation for the loss and damages done to our villages.

“We hope our complaints will be addressed urgently, sir.

Signed Bulama Usman, Bulama Mohammed Malam, Bulama Goni Ali Dawafi and Bulama Mustapha.” (PM News)


Source: News Express

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