From: Ali Abare, Gombe
Tangale youths from Billiri Local Government Area of Gombe State have blamed inaction on the part of the state government for the perennial communal clashes involving two communities in the area.
The youths, under the umbrella of the Tangale Community Development Association Youth Wing, stated this in a statement issued to journalists, on Sunday.
The youths, represented by William Lamai, the Sarkin Samarin Tangale, Yusuf Haske, Sarkin Nadin Tangale and Maikwade Maikerti, caretaker chairman of TCDA Youth Wing, accused the state government for its refusal to implement various committee reports on the demarcation of traditional boundary between Tangale and Kaltungo chiefdoms.
The Tangale youths said as a result of the lack of political will on the part of the state government to implement various recommendations on the boundary issue dating back to 1960, the crisis between the Tangale and Shongom speaking people has persisted.
This the youth said has led to the loss of several lives, as well as the destruction of property worth millions of naira.
They cited the late Shehu Awak Committee recommendations, the late Justice Suleiman Darazo’s Board of Inquiry Report of 1991 and the establishment and composition of the State Boundary Committee as provided by the National Boundary Commission Act, as sufficient to put an end to the lingering crisis but for which the government failed to implement.
The TCDA Youth Wing therefore called on the state government and their political representatives to immediately demand that the National Boundary Commission in conjunction with the Gombe State Boundary Committee, “to without further delay, commence the physical implementation of the said boundary report in the interest of peace” in the area.
They also demanded that adequate compensation for the internally displaced persons of the recent attacks should be imposed on both Shongom and Kaltungo LGAs “from their purse to avoid further occurrence.”
While appreciating the Tangale paramount traditional ruler, the Mai Tangale (Dr) Abdu Buba Maisheru as well as the chairman of Billiri local government area for their calls on the youth to remain calm and not to retaliate, the Tangale youths want government to arrest and punish anyone found wanting.
Recall that in June this year, farmers of Kumana village in Kufai community of Billiri council were chased away from their farms before the community was attacked the following day which to the burning down of over 41 houses in Kufai and Kentengereng. A police sergeant also lost his life in the crisis.