Thirty-two people were feared killed on Tuesday, in a dawn raid on the Local Government Area of the Benue State Governor, Mr. Gabriel Suswam, by a band of suspected Fulani herdsmen. The herdsmen were reported to have unleashed terror at Kurungu and Tse-Vir communities both in Tomb Gambe-tiev town which falls within Governor Suswam’s council, called Logo.
About 80 persons were feared killed in a similar attack on Sunday, March 15 as seven villages were overrun by suspected Fulani herdsmen in Agatu Local Government Area of the state. Two days earlier, some herdsmen struck at Ikpele and Okpopolo communities in the state, killing seven farmers and displacing over 6,000 inhabitants. In the latest attack on Tuesday, gunmen reportedly stormed the area at about 5 am and started shooting at anyone in sight. They also razed down many houses.
An escapee, Chief Joseph Anawah, who spoke with reporters in Makurdi, the state capital, said: “The insurgents, numbering about 100 and heavily armed came while people were still sleeping. Many people woke up in a confused state as a result of gunshots, and were easily cut down with machetes and gunshots. Anawa appealed to the Federal Government, the security agencies and other well-meaning individuals and organizations to end the crisis and save the state from imminent famine following the displacement of farmers.
The Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) for the state command, Austin Ezeani, confirmed the incident, but said only three people were killed in the attack. Ezeani, an Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP), confirmed that the suspected Fulani militia attacked the community and burnt down many of their houses. “Our men and soldiers on ground have been dispatched to the crisis area and calm has already started returning to the place,” he noted.