Jos killings: NMA, Red Cross worry over shortage of blood, rising number of victims


THE Red Cross Nigeria Plateau State branch has lamented the shortage of blood in hospitals where victims of the Yelwa-Zangam crisis were receiving treatment and called on spirited members of the public and good Samaritans to donate blood to the victims.

It will be recalled that Fulani militia attacked the community on Tuesday to the early hours of Wednesday during which over 36 people were killed and several others sustained injuries, now receiving treatment in various hospitals within Jos, the state capital. Speaking with Nigerian Tribune, the branch Secretary of the Red Cross in the state, Mr Yohana Pam, said most of the victims were in Our Lady of Apostle Hospital and Bingham University Teaching Hospital, adding that in the course of the Red Cross routine check, it was discovered that the hospitals were short of blood for the patients who were in need of blood to survive.

“This was discovered in the course of our routine checks that both Our Lady of Apostle Hospital and Bingham Teaching Hospital was short of blood and that is why we are appealing to people to come out and donate blood to safe the lives of victims of the attack receiving treatment in the hospitals”

He added that the organisation will commence a programme on Monday to enable people of the state to donate blood to the National Blood Transition Centre at the Plateau State Specialist Hospital to meet the need of the victims and other people in dire need of blood. In a similar development, the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) in Plateau State has expressed concern over the increasing number of casualties at various hospital emergency wards and mortuaries within Jos, the state capital.

The NMA, in a statement signed by its state chairman, Dr Innocent Emmanuel and secretary, Dr Bapigaan William respectively, strongly condemned the recent crisis in the state, adding that a situation where people face the reality of being attacked, injured and or murdered in cold blood while their homes, farmlands and means of livelihoods are destroyed with no end in sight to these hostilities, was unacceptable.

The statement read in part: “The innocent, harmless, accommodating and committed citizens of Plateau State have continued to live under the perennial unsavoury reality of perpetual terrorism manifesting as kidnappings for ransom, rape, maiming and killings as well as threats of total annihilation. Daily, people are kidnapped from their houses and living with the fear that the same will happen the next day elsewhere or in their neighbourhood unabatedly, with huge sums paid as ransom.

“The NMA frowns exceedingly at the wanton destruction, injury and killings which are one too many. The people deserve better from their leaders as every life is indeed sacred, and the right to life, a fundamental human rights of every Nigerian citizen which should be guaranteed by the Government.” It, however, expressed concern as the victims of the unwarranted attacks continue to populate hospitals’ emergency wards and mortuaries in the state.

The NMA called on the government and the security forces to genuinely commit themselves to do more to prevent further incidences rather than taking reactive approaches on issues that a little more mindfulness, sincerity and commitment could nip in the bud. It further called on the religious and political leaders to be mindful and sensitive of their comments especially in the public domain which has the propensity to incite the public and enflame further, the embers of discord among the peace-loving citizens of Plateau State and the country at large.

In a similar vein, the Kaduna State Scholarship and Loans Board has evacuated students of the state origin studying in University of Jos (UNIJOS) and other tertiary institutions in Plateau State, just as the Delta State government on Thursday, also dispatched three buses with police escort to the state to evacuate students of the state origin.

The Executive Secretary of the Kaduna scholarship board, Malam Hassan Rilwan disclosed in a statement on Thursday, noting that the evacuation was concluded last weekend following the state government’s directives that all students of Kaduna State trapped should be evacuated in view of the security situation in that state.

On Delta State’s part, in a statement by the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Student’s Affairs, Comrade Jerry Ehiwario, the governor said that the evacuation exercise commenced on Thursday adding that the lives of Delta students were very dear to the state. Meanwhile, the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN) and Jama’atu Nasril Islam (JNI), both Plateau State chapter, have condemned the massacre of approximately 36 people on Tuesday night by some criminals and called for a thorough investigation of the unfortunate incident.

The PFN, in a statement signed by its state chairman, Reverend Steven Dangana made available to Nigerian Tribune commiserated with families of the victims, the entire community and the people of Plateau State over the attack. The PFN called on all security agencies saddled with the responsibility of protecting lives and property to rise to their responsibility and fish out the perpetrators and sponsors no matter their connections or however highly placed they may be.

It further urged the government to fully compensate families of all the victims and those who lost their properties and means of livelihood.

The JNI in a statement signed by its state publicity secretary, Alhaji Sani Mudi noted that the number of casualties depicted high level of callousness, inhumanity and barbarism. It said the religious body was so disturbed taking into cognisance that the current killings was coming barely 11 days after that of Rukuba road in which 28 innocent travellers were massacred noting that the recent bloodshed just like the previous ones was upsetting and condemnable.

The Association, however, expressed its dissatisfaction over a statement by Tarayya Ekklisiyoyi Kristi a Nigeria (TEKAN), a block of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) calling for the removal of General Officer Commanding GOC third Armoured Division who doubles as the Commander Operation Safe Haven (OPSH).

“We see this as diversionary and a desire to take us back to the days of needless confrontation along faith lines, with the attendant consequences to the ultimate goal of attaining peace. We, therefore, reject such calls and appeal to TEKAN to avoid confrontation and embrace the path of peace.”


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