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Herdsmen Again! Kill Scores in Benue Communities


Another Benue communities have been with tragedy as gunmen suspected to be nomadic Fulani herdsmen attacked some communities in the state and in the proces killed scores of villagers, unofficially put at 81.
Recall, in February this year, over a thousand people were slaughtered by herdsmen in What area of the state.
According to survivors and eyewitnesses of the herdsmen attacks; Turan, Mbagber, Yonov and Tombo communities in Logo were attacked on the same day while Varser in Ukum Local Government came under siege, leaving scores dead.
The traditional ruler of Logo, Chief Jimmy Meeme, on Monday, while speaking on the invasion of the rural communities said 70 persons were killed in six out of the 10 council wards in his domain.
He said the attacks were carried out by herdsmen who were trying to occupy their territory for cattle grazing.
This attempt was blocked by people of the communities, leading to more attacks, he said.
Two people; a matron at a local clinic in Anyiin community, Kpadoo Asema, and the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camp manager, John Imenger spoke on the cruel treatment meted out to them:”The magnitude of killings is enormous. Scores of people were killed in the past two weeks by Fulani herdsmen in at least 10 local government areas of the state”
One of the IDPs in Anyiin camp, Aseer Yuam, grieved over the gruesome murder of her son by herdsmen in Tombo council ward while attempting to fetch food for his family from the farm.
On his part, the Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, complained that security agencies have been unable to arrest the perpetrators of the coordinated attacks.
However, the spokesman of the Benue State Police Command, ASP Moses Yamu, dismissed allegations of neglect of duty by security personnel.
He insisted that only 22 deaths were recorded in Logo and Ukum Local Government Areas.
Yamu said the affected communities had returned to normal.
“It’s not a recent development. The clashes happened last month and we are on top of the situation,” he said.
The state coordinator of the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria, Garus Gololo, promised to track down those responsible for the attacks in Logo and Ukum.
In February, hundreds of people were said to have been killed and about 1,000 homes destroyed in the Agatu area of Benue in a wave of attacks blamed on Fulani.
Those attacks appeared to be in revenge for the death of a Fulani leader and the theft of his cattle, which was blamed on the Agatu people.
President Muhammadu Bihari has proposed the creation of grazing land to prevent further clashes between herdsmen and locals.

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