The leader of the Tiv Taraba Peoples Association, David Uchiv, on Friday insisted Tiv were not settlers, but indigenes of Taraba State.
Uchiv said this in an interview with our correspondent.
According to the politician, it is only the Jukun who want to be mischievous that are saying Tiv are settlers in the state.
He said, “For instance, the Jukun claimed they founded Wukari in 1596, but by 1670 they were fighting a war in Kano and Kanem Borno. Does it mean they were attacking Kano and Kanem Borno from Wukari? This is a fallacy.
“Tiv have been in what is today Taraba State long before Chamba people met them in 1830 in today’s Donga Local Government Area of Taraba.
“Politically, our participation in the former Wukari federation dates back to 1959 when Charles Gaza was elected to the House of Representatives to represent Wukari federation under UMBC (United Middle Belt Congress).
“In 1979, David Mtuem and Simon Awua represented Matar Fada and Rafin Kada under the NPN (National Party of Nigeria). While David Gbaaondo was elected to represent Takum/Donga federal constituency, and Tsetim Gwakyaa of the NPN replaced Gbaaondo before the military took over power.”
Uchiv said contrary to reports, the violent clashes between Tiv and Jukun had nothing to do with kidnapping, boundary issue or banditry as being alleged.
He said the age-long crisis had been on since 1959, calling on President Muhammadu Buhari to critically look into the crisis with a view to finding a lasting solution to it.
He said, “The solution to this crisis lies within, but it appears Governor (Darius) Ishaku is not capable of solving the problem and this is a good reason the Federal Government must intervene.”