Jukun-Tiv crisis: Workers, students relocate to Benue from Wukari
- THE NATION Report:
Workers and students of Tiv extraction in the Federal University, Wukari (FUW), Taraba State, have continued to flee from the institution.
Most of them are now taking refuge in Makurdi, the Benue State capital, for their safety.
It followed the bloody crisis between Tiv and Jukun ethnic groups in Wukari.
Wukari shares a boundary with Hkum Local Government Area in Benue State.
The crisis started more than three months ago and has continued unabated despite an effort by Benue and Taraba states’ governors to curtail it.
So far, it is estimated that about 200 persons have lost their lives and property worth millions of Naira destroyed.
The Tiv workers and students have appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene in the crisis rocking the university to save lives.
They made the appeal in a letter addressed to the President , dated August 6 and copied to the university’s Chairman, Governing Board, Pro-Chancellor and the Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission (NUC), governors of Benue and Taraba states.
The letter was signed by the university’s Chairman of the Tiv Staff Forum, Mr. Patrick Tion, and Secretary Mr. Ikyer Godwin on behalf of others. It called on the Federal Government to wade into the bloody crisis and save their lives and restore permanent peace, law and order to the institution.
“The true position devoid of sentiments is that there exists a serious security breach at the Federal University, Wukari and a serious war is raging between the Jukun and Tiv in Wukari, where the university is situated.”
They claimed that the tribal war started since April 1.
According to them, the Jukun youths in Wukari are fond of blocking roads leading to Wukari, including the federal highway leading to and from the university. The forum added that the Jukum would forcefully remove Tiv people from vehicles and killed them.
Tion, who condemned the brutal murder of two students, Emmanuel Vihiior and Fater Ayatse Felix of the Departments of Microbiology and Sociology as well as a staff in the Department of Students Affairs, Mr. Mark Tsav – all Tiv – described the killings as “barbaric, uncalled for and highly condemnable”.
He called on the university’s management to stay action on the resumption of academic activities due to begin tomorrow, pending when adequate security measures will be provided.
He denied involvement of workers and students of Tiv extraction in the crisis and power tussle between Jukun and Tiv in Wukari.