Two National Examination Council, NECO, candidates and 13 others have been killed by herdsmen in coordinated attacks on communities in Guma and Logo Local Government areas of Benue State in the early hours of Wednesday.
According to Chairman of Guma Local Government, Mr. Anthony Shawon, the marauders invaded Tse Ishav in Saghev ward, where mourners had gathered for a wake-keep at about 3a.m., killing their victims and injuring others.
According to Shawon, “from our finding, they sneaked into Guma from Logo Local Government Area because we share a common boundary. They attacked Tse Ishav in Saghev ward. Eight people, who were at a wake-keep, were killed and many others were injured.
“Among those killed were two NECO candidates, who came to the village to write their examination.
“While they were pulling out after the attack, they also attacked any compound or house on their path, burning houses and farmland.
“Just less than 48 hours before this attack, they also struck in the night at Mbawa council ward near Yelwata, killing two people, only for them to strike again today (yesterday) around 3a.m. We gathered that they came in three groups.
“We have recovered the corpses of those killed, while the injured have been taken to the hospital.
“I have already alerted Commander of 72 Special Forces Battalion in Makurdi, Commissioner of Police and the State Governor informing them of this bloody attack.”
On his part, Chairman of Logo Local Government Area, Mr Richard Nyajo, said herdsmen raided two council wards in his local government, while pulling out of Guma, burning down three villages.
He said: “They attacked three places, Tombo, Ukemeragya/ Tswarev council wards, killing five persons and injuring several persons.
“The two villages razed were Tse Ngojov and Tse Nyamkyuma. They perpetrated the mayhem while pulling out of Guma where they earlier struck.
“We have recovered the bodies of those killed and those injured are in hospitals for treatment. We have already informed security agencies and Adviser to the Governor on Security of the development.
Nyajo stated that a reinforcement of security personnel had been drafted to affected communities, though the marauders were not apprehended.
Efforts to get a reaction from Benue State Police Command failed, as calls and text messages to Commissioner of Police, Mr Fatai Owoseni, and the command’s Public Relations Officer, PPRO, Assistant Superintendent, Mr Moses Yamu, were not responded to.