Tens of persons have been reported killed in a number of communities in Agatu local government area of Benue state over the weekend. The persons reportedly met their deaths following a spate of night attacks by suspected herdsmen. Many more have also been listed as missing or wounded in the attack on Odugbeho and other communities which has since been confirmed by the state police spokesperson, Kate Anne.
“The commissioner of police has deployed more police officers to manage the incident and forestall further breakdown of law and order. Number of victims is yet to be ascertained as officers are still engaged in stabilising the area,” Abene disclosed.
An eye witness, Isaac Oche, who is a resident of the community, is quoted in reports as saying that the attack took place at about 5.45am on Sunday morning. According to him, the attacker who are suspected herdsmen believed to have moved in from Nasarawa state, invaded the village in a coordinated fashion and began shooting at anyone and everyone in sight till about 6:40am. Oche added that about 20 bodies have been recovered while the search for more continues.
“We cannot stay any longer to recover all the dead bodies this night because it is dark and no security, I believe more bodies will be recovered when the day breaks and security agents are around.”
Another resident, Iyu Goche, who said he is one of the youths conducting search and recover efforts, noted that more bodies are very likely to be found given that there are still too many persons that are yet to be accounted for.
It will be recalled that communities in Guma, Makurdi, Agatu and Katsina Ala local government areas of the state have been on the receiving end of an endless streak of attacks by suspected herdsmen whose mode of operation appear very similar in coordination. All the affected communities came out worse with heavy casualty figures leading residents to flee their homes and farmlands to refugee camps.
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