By Peter Duru
MAKURDI—NO fewer than 15 persons were feared killed in an outbreak of fighting between herdsmen and farmers at Ipiga village in Ohimini Local Government Area of Benue State.
Vanguard gathered from a source in the area that the crisis erupted Sunday afternoon, when some armed herdsmen stormed neigbouring Ajegbe village, where they grazed their cattle and destroyed farmlands.
The source said: “From there they moved into Ipiga village yesterday morning, shooting sporadically, though they met a stiff resistance from the locals.
“A bloody fight erupted; two of the herdsmen were reportedly killed, while about 13 of the villagers were also killed. However, many are still missing and unaccounted for.”
When contacted, the Senior Special Assistant to Benue State Governor on Fulani Matters, Alhaji Garus Gololo, said two herdsmen were killed in the crisis.
Gololo said: “I just came back from the area this afternoon (yesterday). Two herdsmen were killed by the villagers and many cows were also killed; others were rustled.
“I met the Ardo of the area and everyone has been warned against any form of reprisal attack and there was nothing like that because government had warned against this kind of crisis in the state.
“Though the body of one of the dead herdsmen has been recovered and is reportedly with the police, the search for the other is still ongoing.”
Contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Assistant Superintendent Moses Yamu said he was yet to receive detail of the crisis.