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Again, Gunmen kill Eight In Benue



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Gunmen suspected to be herdsmen on Saturday unleashed terror in some communities in Agatu Local Government Area of Benue State, killing eight people.

Residents of the affected communities, such as Ogwumogbo, Ikpele, and Ejima, were reported to have fled their villages.

Agatu communities have consistently witnessed armed herders attacks in the past two weeks, with troops and civilians killed.

In the first attack, which happened on January 18, 2024, five people, including three troops, were ambushed and killed.

Force Commander of Operation Whirl Stroke, OPWS, Major General Sunday Igbinowanhia, who later confirmed the killing of three troops to journalists in Makurdi, said that the troops engaged the armed herders in a gun duel that lasted for three hours and successfully repelled the armed herders who might have lost many people in there fold.

He said, “Three deceased comprised of two soldiers and one Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps personnel were recorded, and two other soldiers were wounded and receiving treatment at the  Nigerian Air Force hospital in Makurdi.”

Barely five days after, the former Commissioner for Information, Culture, and Tourism, Mike Inalegwu, who hails from the LG, confirmed another attack leading to the death of two people.

Saturday attack, the third in the past two weeks, was said to have lasted four hours, with the armed herders raiding several communities.

A resident of the local government who did not want to be mentioned said, “Residents of Ogwumogbo, Ikpele, and Ejima have all deserted their homes into the forest.”

The member representing Agatu State Constituency in the State Assembly, Godwin Edoh, who confirmed Saturday’s attack to journalists through phone on Sunday, said the attack took place between noon and 4 pm on Saturday.

He said, “It’s true, these attackers invaded three communities of Ogwumogbo, Ikpele, and Ejima on Saturday between 12 and 4 pm, and they sacked the people; eight people were killed in this latest attack, and several people are still missing.

“Despite all our efforts, the killings have persisted. No one is coming to our aid and the governor is quiet. I do not understand this.”

When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer, SP Catherine Anene, said, “I do not have this report”.

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