Suspected Fulani herdsmen on Wednesday launched three separate attacks on some communities in Makurdi, Guma and Agatu Local Government Areas (LGAs) of Benue state, killing a traditional ruler, five others and left several others with various degree of injuries.
The traditional ruler, Zaki Hyacinth Ajon and Benjamin Anakula were butchered to death in Tse-Zoola village, Agan, Makurdi LGA of the state, while the herdsmen killed another two in Mbayer-Yandev council ward of Guma LGA, injuring three other persons in the process.
The other attack took place in
Odugbeho council ward, Agatu LGA of the state, where two persons where shot to death by rampaging herdsmen.
In the attack on Tse-Zoola, the state
Governor Samuel Ortom made a brief stop over while returning from another function, sued for calm, even as he assured the community that government would do everything within it’s powers to ensure their safety.
The oldest man in the community, Elder Aho Zoola, who narrated the incident, told the governor that “The militia herdsmen attacked our village around 2am when the people were asleep, and killed Zaki Ajon and Benjamin Anakula.”
“We have never had any issues with herdsmen even when their herds graze on our crops we watch helplessly because we do not want any problems but despite our disposition they still came and killed our Zaki and our son.”, he lamented.
Confirming the attack on Mbayer-Yandev community in Guma LGA on Thursday, the Chairman, Caleb Aba said the incident occurred at about 8pm on Wednesday.
According to him, “It happened at about 8pm though my attention was drawn to the incident at about 9pm that Fulani herdsmen invaded Mbayer-Yandev council ward, killing two persons and injuring three others who have been moved to the Benue State University Teaching Hospital (BSUTH), for treatment.”
On the other hand, the Deputy Leader, Agatu Legislative Council, Julius Abu who confirmed the attack in Odugbeho said the herdsmen attacked and murdered two persons in his constituency, even as he condemned the killings, describing it as unprovoked.
The Deputy Leader who is also the Councillor representing Odugbeho council ward observed that those killed by the marauding herdsmen had killed Joseph Babayo and Simon Idewu both natives of Odugbeho and Ayila communities along Odugbeho road.
He appealed to government to deploy military personnel to the area to check the incessant killings and mounting tension in area, insisting that people were deserting their homes for fear of more invasion and attacks on their community.
Abi further observed that, “We have appeal to our people to remain calm and avoid the temptation of taking the law into their hands.”
However, efforts to get the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Benue state command, DSP, Sewuese Anene to confirm the reports proved abortive, as calls put through to her were rebuffed.