The Tiv Cultural and Social Association in Takum local government area of Taraba on Sunday accused the Caretaker Council Chairman of Takum, Hon. Shiban Tikari of bias in the ongoing Jukun-Tiv crisis in the State.
Chairman of the association in Takum, Hon. Peter Suleagbough at a press briefing in Jalingo called on Shiban to play the role of a statesman and stop his bias posture which they said was rather aggravating the crisis.
Suleagbough urged Shiban to see himself as Chairman of Takum and not a section of the people, saying his actions and words in respect to the Jukun/Tiv crisis in the area were portraying him as a Jukun Chairman and not as Chairman of the entire Takum LGA.
“When Rev. Fr. Tanko was killed Shiban quickly rushed to the press and accused Tiv of killing the Priest at Amadu when the said incident happened at Kpakufu (a Jukun settlement).
“What was Shiban trying to hide in that hasty press statement? How did Shiban arrived at the conclusion that Tiv people were behind the killing of Fr. Tanko without investigation?
“Rev. Fr. Tanko has been with the Tiv people in Amadu for some time now. He is loved by the Tiv people and has been going from Vilage to Village in his evangelism work without any problem.
“If Tiv people want to kill him, do they need to wait until he travel to Takum only to kill him at a Jukun settlement?
“Tiv people have been displaced in the area and on that fateful day Tanko was killed, Jukun militia blocked Takum-Wukari road preventing Igbo and Hausa business men from attending Peva market.
“We condemn the killing of Fr. Tanko and we call on relevant security agencies to faithfully investigate the incident and bring the perpetrators to justice,”he said.
The group alleged that when Emmanuel Njira was killed on the farm, Shiban was quick to put the blame on the door steps of the Tiv people when he knew that the land in question where Njira was killed has been in dispute by three different tribes.
According to him, the attitude of blaming every act of insecurity and criminality on the Tiv people without investigation was what led to the crisis in Takum.
The Tiv leader who explained that when Hosea Ibi was killed, Kuteb people did not took arms against anybody and when Shiban’s official Hilux van was sighted dropping the corpses of two Tiv people, the Tiv people did not took arms against anybody, advised Shiban to allow security agencies to do their work.
Efforts to get the reaction of the council Chairman Hon. Shiban Tikari failed as his phone rang out without response