News RendezvousThe member Representing Gombi constituency in the Adamawa state house of Assembly, Kefas Japheth, has criticised federal government’s neglect of his community to be attacked repeatedly by suspected Boko Haram insurgents.Kefas said, incessant attacks on Garkida has left the entire Gombi local government in distress and members of the community hopeless over governnents failure to halt repeated attacks on their community.Kefas made this known in a chat with News Rendezvous, in Yola, Adamawa state.Kefas said, the recent killing of six members of his community in a Christmas eve attacks and the kidnapping of five members of the community who were subsequently killed in cold blood has left the entire community in shock at the failure collapse of security in the country.Japheth Kefas speaking with Rendezvous on the details of the horror experience of the Christmas Eve attacks and effect of the incessant attacks on Garkida, said, the unabated attacks has created an atmosphere of fear and uncertainty not only in Garkida but in the entire local government because no one feels safe or has confidence in the military to defend them.Kefas said, “This consistent and unrelenting attacks has created an atmosphere of great fear in all our communities in Gombi LGA not only in Garkida town alone.”We feel that the federal government is not doing its job or performing up to expectations in terms of security and defending our people.”The sole responsibility of government is to protect lives and properties of its citizens but in the case of Garkida town reverse is the case.”These so-called unknown gun men suspected to be Boko haram insurgents succeeded in killing six gentlemen on the day of the attack, abducted five youths and subsequently three days later, we saw in a viral video clip how they were executed in cold blood, shot to death in the eyes of the world.”Speaking on whether his community has confidence in military protection and the impact of the attacks on locals he said, “We have lost hope as to whether this year our people will go to farm because it seems as if the insurgents can abduct us and kill us and there is nothing anyone can do about it.”This is the the fourth time this ugly situation has happened to my people.”Our greatest worry is that in all these attack in Garkida, we always have information about it and the information were always passed to the relevant law enforcement agents, a day or two before it happens, we always report Boko haram sightings close to Garkida area but no effort seems to be made to stop them and the attacks still happen anyway.”Its sad and we are disappointed and our federal government has to do better.”Kefas added that, “The level at which the insurgents target the community is alarming and an embarrassment to the nation.“I am sad as a person and disappointed that these attacks happen again and again.”Our people are bitter because of the suffering inflicted on them as a result of the losses from the incessant attacks.”Some travelled from far and wide to celebrate Christmas with their families but spent it in the bushes, hiding.””We reliably gathered from our local intelligence, that as at boxing day, about nine (9) trucks carrying the insurgents were sighted hovering around and we might be attacked again.”We have however, resorted to self help and we are mobilising vigilante groups to Garkida, the logistics is quite challenging but that is our best option for now.”We need help, and we cannot be the subject of attacks without end, our people have lost everything.”A local, who spoke to Rendezvous from Garkida said, “We are had to run into the bushes, with my our family members, young and old, all the preparations we were making for Christmas, we have left behind and ran away for our dear lives.“We were just informed that they were on their way to our town again in several trucks, like it happened in February this year, no military was on the ground to help us, so we ran away to the nearby bushes and trees and rocks, hoping they would not follow us there, both the old and young, men and women.”Again, we were forced out of the comfort of our homes, and right now, no one can tell you the scale of destruction they are wrecking on our community because we are all hiding, hoping for the best.”Another residents told Rendezvous, “I am just returning from a journey now, from what I can see, they have burnt down living faith church, about 19 vehicles belonging to a construction company, working on some road projects in the area, shops, homes, and personal properties have been set ablaze.”I don’t think we are part of Nigeria, because these people just come to our community anytime they want, take whatever they want and leave however they want unchallenged, whenever, there are military in this town, there are no Boko Haram and whenever Boko Haram come, there would not be military, I think we are on our own, if you build a house, they will destroy it, if you rebuild it, they will destroy it again, so, what us the point?” he lamented.Garkida Community, a home to the current chairman of the North East Development Commission (NEDC) General Paul Tarfa and to the former Governorship candidate of the SDP in the 2019 general elections, Emmanuel Bello, has become the epicenter for recurring Boko Haram incursions and consistent attacks in Adamawa.The attacks has continued to leave members of the community despondent and perplexed as members cry out to government for intervention as the attacks happen again and again without military intervention.Gombi local government, one of the seven local governments in northern Adamawa that was occupied by the Boko Haram insurgents during Boko Haram invasion of the state in 2014, Garkida, a community under Gombi local government was one of the places worst hit by the attacks, now six years later, no one wondered that it would again become a place for regular attacks and invasion in 2020.In early 2020, February 21st to be precise, Boko Haram insurgents, The Sun reported, invaded the town hours after federal military forces left the community and held the community ransom for about three hours, killed several, looted shops, homes, burnt down churches and left the community members devasted, mulling over their loss as they were working hard to rebuild their lives from the losses of 2014.Just on the eve of Christmas 2020, again, Boko Haram struck Garkida, as community members left everything behind, spent their Christmas Eve in the bushes, watching and waiting, while the insurgents ransack their homes, burn down churches, and killed at least six people, community members told Daily Sun, without any government intervention.So, it was a Christmas, Garkida would never want to remember as residents recount the horror details of their ordeals.
The lawmaker representing Gombi Constituency in the Adamawa state house of assembly, Japhet Kefas, has called for immediate military intervention in Garkida to forestall a possible second attack by the Boko haram insurgents on Garkida.Kefas said local sightngs suggests that some Boko Haram fighters have been spotted in 9 trucks around kalamba, in the outskirts of Garkda, Saturday evening.
He explained that the sightings has triggered panic and unrest in the community adding that movements was similar to the kind which the insurgents made in the attack on Garkida on the eve of Christmas.
Japhet said, his community would not be care free with the information on the movements of the insurgents, because it was in a similar manner that the insurgents operated on the eve of Christmas, resulting in the deaths of six persons.
Kefas said, ” Information has just reached us now that Boko Haram men are mobilizing themselves to Garkida for another attack.
“Now we are mobilizing hunters to Garkida to repel, another possible attack.
“We are working keenly to deploy vigilantes and hunters to Garkida town, the logistics is quite demanding to carter for the hunters who will be camped in the town for sometime.”
Kefas disclosed that, “The casualty from the attacks by insurgents on Garkida on Christmas Eve was six instant deaths and it is still not yet clear if the two persons abducted by the insurgents are dead or alive.
“A search party made up of hunters and civilian JTF, have been deployed to search for the two young men abducted by the insurgents and they are yet to be found.
“Due to similarities of the mode of operation adopted by the insurgents, our communities would not afford to joke with this available information on the sighting of the insurgents in nine trucks heading for Garkida.
“There’s need for precaution, and we have notified all relevant security agencies about the possibility of a second attack by the insurgents on Garkida town because of awkward movements reminiscent of the first attack on the eve of Christmas, resulting in the death of six persons.
“We can’t count the casualties but there were six instant deaths;
“A fourteen year old girl and one vigilante are receiving treatment for gunshot wounds sustained in the attacks.
“The attackers burnt trucks, pay loaders, heavy trucks meant for the construction of Gombi- Garkida and Biu Township roads.
“They also burnt a bus loaded with wrappers, looted shops and houses and set the vigilante and military dent in Garkida ablaze.”
Attacks by Boko Haram elements on Garkida, a town located at the foot of Mandara mountains, exploited by insurgents in the guerrilla warfare, have witnessed recurring attacks, particularly during festive periods.
Early this year attacks by the insurgents left scores killed while churches, hospitals and telecommunication infrastructure in the town were destroyed.
It was one of the worst attacks carried out by insurgents since the recapture of the town from the insurgents in 2014, following the capture of Gombi, Michika, Maiha, Mubi North, Mubi South and Hong by insurgents.