Billiri Crisis: Tangale elders accuse Gombe govt of using compensation of victims to siphon resources
By Matthew ELOYI
The Board of Trustees and Board of Elders of Tangale Community Development Association in Gombe state have alleged that the state government was using the compensation of victims of the Billiri crisis to siphon government resources.
They made the allegation at a joint press conference at the NUJ Secretariat in Bauchi, explaining that they left Gombe because “each time we have a press conference, the government will go and muzzle the press and it won’t be reported.”
A member of the Board of Trustees, Daniel Maddo, said that video evidence presented by the State/Muslim Counsel to the Commission of Enquiry showed that most of the non-indigenes with shops in the market had packed their goods from the stalls before they were burnt.
In his words, “The forum also observed with dismay the compensation paid by Government in respect of properties lost to the tune of over N500 million to owners of stalls burnt during the mayhem. Equally disturbing is the over-bloated compensation was paid which was not commensurate with the losses incurred.”
Maddo cited that one of such spurious compensations was a tomato seller who was given N500,000 as compensation for the goods she lost saying that was too outrageous.
“Indeed, we learned that some few honest individuals among the business community were said to have rejected the over-bloated compensation. In short, the exercise was intended to plunder the resources of Billiri LGA,” he added.