Crime

Gov Simon Lalong And His False Claims On The Security Situation In Mangu LGA

×

Gov Simon Lalong And His False Claims On The Security Situation In Mangu LGA

Share this article

PRESS STATEMENT

Preamble

Our attention and that of the Mwaghavul nation at home and in the diaspora has been drawn to a series of lies and falsehoods uttered by no one else other than Governor Lalong himself about the security situation in Mangu Local Government Area (LGA), during a recent interview on TVC News channel. Ordinarily, we would not respond to this most pedestrian and insensitive expression about the actual security situation in the area coming from a person occupying the most exalted seat in the state. However, due to the series of toxic lies contained in the said interview, which is capable of misleading the general public, locally and internationally about the true situation in Mangu LGA, we find it pertinent to respond in this press statement.

Lalong’s Claims on Restoring Security in Mangu LGA

First, Lalong claimed in the said interview that security has been restored in Mangu LGA and cited the flying of jets all over the LGA as proof of his claims. Secondly, he claimed that Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) are being taken care of, though he did not mention how. Also, the Governor claimed that he has restored peace on the Plateau in the last eight years, and expressed his capability to handle criminals who are destroying the peace of Plateau within the remaining few days he has to be in office.

*_Our Response_*

To begin with, we find Governor Lalong’s statement that flying jets and “a lot of security” over Mangu LGA as proof of restoration of security in the area most jaundiced, as it only depicts how myopic his understanding of security is. The kind of threats we are facing from Fulani terrorist herdsmen is typical of guerrilla warfare, in which the attackers target our villages at night and wantonly destroy lives and properties (refer to our earlier rejoinder to Miyetti Allah’s letter to the General Officer Commanding 3rd Armoured Division for statistics). While it is not for us to dictate to the Government and the security agencies the number of personnel to be deployed at any crisis zone, the presence of security personnel should be visible, and if otherwise as it is in the case of Mangu LGA, then Lalong’s claim of “a lot of security” is outrightly false. For the benefit of the doubt, the real situation on the ground across Mangu LGA reveals near total absence of security personnel in the area. In addition, the restoration of security should be judged by the ability of those deployed, to prevent threats from attackers. However, as it is currently, most of our communities are still facing real threats of invasion by our attackers. For over a week now our people have not only been displaced from their ancestral homes (refer to our response to Miyetti Allah’s letter to the GOC 3rd Armoured Division for statistics of villages destroyed and no of IDPs), but more threats are being made to invade even Mangu town itself. Up to this time, our people are only surviving by the mercy of God.

On the claim that IDPs are being attended to, we find this most ridiculous of a person who is supposed to be the father of the State. It is rather disheartening that since Fulani terrorist herdsmen started attacking communities in Mangu LGA on 14th April 2023 up till the most recent attacks, Governor Lalong has never visited the scenes of the attacks to commiserate with the victims. Lalong prefers to be junketing around Abuja; an action typical of an absentee leader. It is equally distressing just as it is traumatising that Lalong claimed in his statement that IDPs are being attended to. Lalong prefers to demonstrate his Father Christmas nature by leaving his state and going to far away Niger to donate a whooping sum of 32 million Naira to the Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida University in that State, when over 30,000 IDPs in Mangu LGA, in his State, languish in displaced persons’ camps, without any intervention from the State government. While we are not against any donation to any University, the choice of that opportunity to spew toxic lies about the security situation in our LGA is, to say the least, insulting to our collective sensibilities as a people. We challenge Governor Lalong to provide any proof that IDPs are being attended to in Mangu LGA by his administration. Up to the time of this press statement, neither the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) nor the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has visited the crisis areas, to assess the prevailing humanitarian crisis. As far as we know, our people displaced are in different camps within Mangu town and neighbouring LGAs are being taken care of, thanks to the philanthropic gestures of kind-hearted individuals, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), friends and relatives.

Lastly, on Lalong’s claim that he has restored peace on the Plateau in the last eight years and his determination to handle criminals who are destroying that peace within the remaining few days he will be in office, we want to say in clear and categorical terms that while we welcome every sincere initiative or action aimed at restoring sustainable peace and security in Mangu LGA and indeed, the entire Plateau State, Lalong’s sudden realisation of his capability and his determination to secure lives and property of our people falls short of inspiring confidence in our people.

*_Conclusion_*

We want to reiterate that our people in Mangu LGA are peace-loving and are open to any genuine efforts towards providing sustainable peace and security in the area and beyond. We also want to state that our people have had enough from our aggressors and we have been abandoned by the Plateau State Government under the administration of Lalong and are left alone to lick our wounds. Therefore, rather than capitalising on the unfortunate plight of our people to score cheap political goals, we admonish Governor Lalong to concentrate on genuinely restoring peace and security in Mangu and other parts of the state suffering attacks from the hands of Fulani terrorist herdsmen in the less than five (5) days he has in office.

Da Lawrence Kyarshik

DPA MDA