From Tongnaan Bawa, Jos
The General Officer Commanding (GOC) 3 Division Nigerian Army and Commander Operation SAFE HAVEN (OPSH), Major General AE Abubakar has warned communities in Bokkos Local Government Area of Plateau State against taking the law into their hands.
He handed down the warning during a stakeholders meeting organized for all community leaders of Bokkos
Where he emphasized the importance of separating criminality in the society, on Saturday 18th November, 2023, at the 3 Division Auditorium, Maxwell Khobe Cantonment Jos.
In his opening address, the GOC/Commander OPSH highlighted the significant achievements recently recorded in ensuring that peace continues to flourish on the Plateau, said they included the relocation of about 40 communities back to their ancestral homes, domination of all critical vulnerable areas, arrest and neutralisation of several bandits, busting of factories manufacturing small arms and light weapons, arrest of drug peddling syndicates and recovery of several cache of arms and ammunition amongst others.
He further revealed that as part of the civil military cooperation framework of the Nigerian Army, several projects were executed to include the construction of new hospital outpost with medical equipment, schools renovation and installation of solar-powered boreholes all in remote communities to create the enabling conditions for the return of displaced citizens.
He however warned that, any action by few criminal elements, crisis merchants and groups to reverse the successes recorded so far will not be tolerated.
The GOC stressed the need for stakeholders to prevent violence from resurfacing in Bokkos, noting signs of triggering violence in the area have already been identified and efforts are underway to eradicate them permanently. He urged the community leaders to cooperate fully with security agencies to identify and apprehend those responsible for instigating crises in the area and warned criminals to change their evil ways for peace.
General Abubakar further revealed that those involved in criminal acts, such as farm destruction, cattle rustling, and cow poisoning will not only be made to pay compensation, but would henceforth also be prosecuted. He urged the people to forgive past misdeeds and work towards embracing one another.
The GOC also emphasized the importance of collective efforts in fighting criminalities to achieve lasting peace. He further urged all stakeholders to work together towards peaceful coexistence.
The leaders Community leaders while responding expressed their gratitude to the GOC and Commander OPSH for his swift intervention in addressing the recent emerging issues that could potentially trigger violence in Bokkos.
They called for severe punishment to be meted out on those involved in unlawful acts and reiterated their support for the troops.
The speakers also urged Operation SAFE HAVEN to take decisive actions against drug peddlers, as drug influence was contributing to criminality in the region.
The community leaders also pledged their complete cooperation to OPSH and the security agencies in ensuring a peaceful and secured environment for all residents of Bokkos.
The statement however said the event was attended by the Transitional Chairman Bokkos Local Government, Hon Monday Kassah, Acting President Bokkos Local Government Traditional Council, Saf Lawrence Ayizat, Zonal Chairman Miyetti Allah, Chairman Gam Allah as well as traditional leaders and Community leaders from Bokkos.