Bandits Invade Benue Again, Kill Monarch, 24 Others

-Gov. Samuel Ortom

Three local governments were thrown into mourning on Monday as bandits invaded and killed a traditional ruler, Zaki Unongo Shaayange and 24 others in three separate attacks on communities in Logo, Tarka and Guma Local Government areas of Benue State by bandits.

The attack also left many hospitalised with severe machete and gunshot injuries.

It was gathered from a community leader, Chief Joseph Anawa that the armed herdsmen numbering about six blocked and took over the Anyiin-Tse Kile road in Ukemberagya Ward of Gaambetiev Logo council on Monday night at about 7:15p.m.

“They shot and killed the traditional ruler, Zaki Unongo Shaayange at Ikyaan village, matcheted many who are now in critical condition at the NKST Hospital Anyiin.

“One of the victims of the attack, Mr. Aondoakura Kile also disclosed that the Fulani terrorists made away with some Baja motorcycles of their victims,” he said.

It was also gathered from a local source that no fewer than nine persons were gunned down same Monday night at about 8p.m., by armed herdsmen who invaded Tse-Sumaka village near Umenge, Mbadwem Council Ward in Guma LGA.

The marauders were reported to have invaded the community from neighbouring Nasarawa state, shooting sporadically and chasing their victims out of their homes.

“They shot at the people as they fled and anyone they caught up with was not spared.

“Nine persons were killed and many others sustained injuries.

“As we speak women and children are fleeing their homes in their numbers in search of safe areas in neighboring communities to hide themselves,” he said.

Confirming the attack, the Guma Local Government Council Chairman, Mr. Caleb Aba, told newsmen on phone said the attack was unprovoked.

He added that “these days these herdsmen don’t have to be provoked before they attack and kill because the agenda is to chase us away from our ancestral homes and occupy our land.”

Protesting youths lay corpses on road
It was also gathered that the armed herders, at about the same time, invaded Tiortyu community which is less than 18 kilometers from Makurdi town, on Makurdi-Gboko road in Tarka council, where 15 persons, including women, were either hacked or shot dead.

That attack triggered an angry protest by the youths of the area who took over the busy Makurdi-Gboko road.

They laid the corpses on the road for several hours, stopping all vehicular movements on that axis of the state.

Contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer, Superintendent Catherine Anene, said she was at the scene of one of the attacks with the Police Commissioner and could not talk, but promised to get back.

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