John Shiaondo, Makurdi
There is tension in Anyiin, Governor Gabriel Suswam’s ancestral home, following renewed attack by Fulani herdsmen on five communities which resulted to the killing of over 100 persons.
The five communities, which include Iorja, Ukula Gafa Per, and Kusa all in Ukember Agya Tswarev council ward, are located less than ten kilometres from Anyiin the Governor’s village.
THE UNION gathered that Fulani herdsmen numbering more than 50 with sophisticated weapons allegedly invaded the communities around 4 AM and started killing, maiming and burning properties of the unsuspecting villagers in the operation that lasted till 10 AM.
In was further learnt that most of the villagers killed were internally displaced persons resettled in the affected areas after previous attack on their communities by the herdsmen.
A resident in the area Joseph Anawa told THE UNION that both children, the elderly and women were killed in the unlaught and described the attack as the deadliest launched against communities in the area since the crisis started.
“The attack is one of the deadliest, the place was heavily populated because it serves as resettlement areas, these people came and killed almost everybody in the place. In some instances a whole families are completely wiped out.”
“We are suspecting compromise by the soldiers who are camped few kilometres from the place, because while the attack lasted for up to six hour they could not make any effort to even go there. For this we are calling for investigation of soldiers posted to the area,” he said.
But the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) Benue State Command, ASP Austin Ezeani who confirmed the incident, however, said only four persons were killed in the attack.
He said because those who had attack the communities allegedly disguised themselves as soldiers, they were not necessarily from the force.
“Because of the insecurity now in the country people even wear military uniforms to disguise themselves to perpetrate crime, so those people were not really soldiers as alleged,” he maintained.
According to the PPRO, Policemen have already been dispatched to the affected communities noting that calm has already started returning in the area.