Leader of the National Izala Movement, Sheikh Abdullahi Bala-Lau.

The National leader of Jama’atu Izalatil Bid’a wa Iqamatus Sunnah, Sheik Abdullahi Bala-Lau, has called on the federal and Plateau State governments to punish perpetrators of the ambush that left 23 commuters dead in Plateau State to avert reprisals.

Sheik Bala-Lau made the call in Katsina where the Izala movement launched this year’s tree planting campaign which was an annual activity of the movement.

He noted that meting out appropriate punishment on the perpetrators of the killings would exhibit government’s commitment to maintaining lasting peace on the Plateau which had recorded a similar incident in Dura-du village in Jos South Local Government Area where General Idris Alkali was killed in 2018.

Bala-lau attributed the recurrence of such incident to the release on bail of the suspected perpetrators of the ambush on the Army General by a State High Court in 2019.

According to him, non-punishment of criminals will encourage impunity and breed an endless cycle of killings and reprisals which is not healthy for the country.

“It must be pointed that Governor Simon Lalong has greatly improved peace on the Plateau in the last six years, and I urged the Plateau State government to uphold its reputation for working towards lasting peace in the state.

“Security agencies should work to restore normalcy in the wake of the latest incident, and the judiciary should avoid acts that could encourage impunity, particularly where human life and public peace are involved”, the Izala leader stated.

On the tree planting campaign which was launched in Katsina, the Islamic scholar noted that the movement had already mobilized its members to plant 24 million trees nationwide in the new Islamic year.

He explained that one million trees would be planted in each state where the movement had a representation, in order to improve the ecosystem towards reducing the effect of greenhouse gas emission destroying human, animal and plant life, particularly in the cities.

Bala-lau appealed to government at all levels to embark on regular tree planting campaigns as the most effective way to preserve the environment for the present and future generations.

Isma’il Adamu, Katsina