Crime

Plateau killings: Gov Lalong inaugurates inter-religious council to stop killings

From Teryima Ajijah, Jos

Following renewed killings of persons in some parts of Plateau state, particularly in Bassa and Riyom Local Government Areas, Governor of Plateau state, Simon Lalong, Monday inaugurated an Inter-denominational Council to proffer solution to the menace.

Inaugurating the Council to be co-headed by the former President of Church of Christ in Nations (COCIN), Rev Dr Pandam Yamsat, and the Emir of Wase, Alhaji Sambo Mohammed III,
who doubles as the Chairman, Jama’atu Nasir Islam (JNI) in Plateau state.

Lalong charged the committee to work out modalities, toward bring an end to incessant crisis, particularly between farmers and herders, which has claimed several lives.

“I am directing the Council to support the Peace Building Agency in finding a lasting solution to renewed herder-farmers clashes in some parts of the State, such as Bassa where from last week till yesterday (Sunday) night, we have reports that people have been killed in attacks and reprisals.”

It was gathered that six persons where Sunday, shot dead by yet to be identified gunmen in Ganawuri district of Riyom Local Government Area.

At the inauguration, the governor said the state inter-religious council is to be guided by some terms of reference.

His words: “To Promote the culture of inter-faith dialogue as a viable mechanism for peaceful co-existence, understanding and religious tolerance in Plateau state.

“To work with different faith communities and other organizations that work across faith lines to expand respect for religious pluralism and freedom of religion or belief in Plateau state.

“To offer advisory services to the State Government on matters of religious practice.

“To deliberate on reported cases of religious conflicts and proffer urgent solutions for government’s intervention. To work closely with relevant agencies of government to improve social cohesion as well as promote the agenda of Peace on the Plateau through healing, forgiveness and reconciliation.” He pleaded.

Governor Lalong gave reason for the choice of members of the committee thus: “Religious leaders can offer honest, non-partisan and informed counsel on critical matters and present their recommendations to government and other policy makers at all levels.”

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