At least four masquerades were gunned down by operatives of the Nigerian Correctional Service in a daylight face-off in Pankshin Local government area of Plateau State.
The operatives also injured seven other people, WikkiTimes learnt.
Sources in the area revealed that the incidents occurred after the officers warned the masquerades to stay away from their office premises. The area is popularly known for the kinds of annual cultural practices mostly orchestrated by traditional worshipers.
Bala John, a resident of the area, told Wikkitimes that the incident took place on Saturday, a day after the warning was communicated.
“That was yesterday (Saturday), the prison warders warned them to stay off from their premises, but I think the masquerades and the youth following them provoked the officers. Three died on the spot while the fourth one passed on in hospital,” John said, adding seven other people sustained various degrees of injuries.
Alfred Arabo, the Plateau State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), SAID he was not in town for some days and can only give details when reached.
“I have been in transit since yesterday, I have just arrived in town,” HE TOLD WikkiTimes. “So I was not in town to know what is happening, but if I get details in regard to what you are asking I will get back to you.”
In 2021, a clash between security operatives and masquerades in Pankshin town claimed a soldier and led to loss of one rifle. The incident occurred during their cultural festivity, where a masquerade allegedly whipped a soldier along the road for standing in their way.