An elderly man and three others were killed by assailants suspected to be Fulani herdsmen in a midnight raid at the Gbemacha council ward in Gwer Local Government Area of Benue State.
According to a witness, the herdsmen had moved into the community with cows, which destroyed several cassava farms, an action condemned by residents in and around the council ward.
The suspected herdsmen struck in reprisal attack, after residents of the area moved against them for destroying the farmlands.
Expressing his dismay at the senseless killings, an eyewitness said; “The development did not go down well with youths of the area, who tried to resist them but were equally countered by the armed herdsmen who besieged the community in their numbers and sacked the locals from their homes.”
Commenting on the matter in Makurdi, Professor Jonathan Uever, Special Adviser to the State Governor on Bureau for Lands and Survey said; “They were not provoked in any way. From what I gathered from my people in the last three days, the herdsmen stormed Gbemacha council ward and everybody ran for their lives.
“They took over our community and broke into people’s houses, destroyed food barns and whatever food they saw were burnt. They hid near a popular well in the community, where they slaughtered an elderly man and three others.
“I am in touch with the Local Government Sole Administrator. I also learned yesterday that the Sole Administrator had mobilised security personnel and the Civilian Joint Task Force, CJTF, to Abinsi area, where the invaders reportedly crossed from into the community”, he added.
Confirming the attack, the State Police Public Relations Officer, Assistant Superintendent Moses Yamu, re-enforced that the attack by the herdsmen was in retaliation of an earlier incident.
“The attack was as a result of the alleged killing of a herdsman in the community. As I speak with you, our men are in the community to maintain the peace and stem any escalation of the crisis.”
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