BY PETER DURU
MAKURDI – Five persons were at the weekend reportedly killed in two separate attacks on Tse-Semaka and Olegobiudu villages in Guma and Agatu local government areas of Benue state respectively by suspected herdsmen, including a herdsman at the Lower Benue area of Makurdi town.
Vanguard gathered from a source who craved anonymity in the Agatu that the victims were killed while taking their bath in a stream.
The source said, “the incident occurred on Sunday, afternoon when seven boys went to take their bath at the stream in the community.
“Unfortunately, they were ambushed at the stream by herdsmen who waylaid and opened fire on their unsuspecting victims which led to the death of two of the boys.
“Others managed to escape while the matter was also reported at the Agatu Police Police state.” He said.
In the same vein, Vanguard gathered that two persons were killed at Tse-Semaka when suspected herdsmen invaded in community late Sunday.
According to our source, the victims were reportedly killed when they moved into the deserted village from their IDPs camp to pick some of their belongings from their homes.
“They were ambushed by herdsmen who unknown to them had taken over the village and were grazing on people’s farms.”
Benue State Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni confirmed the killing of the four and the herder at Lower Benue while flagging of a Joint Patrol Initiative of the leadership of herdsmen in Benue state and local government council chairmen and paramount rulers in the state.
Owoseni described the killings as saddening and unacceptable given the efforts the command had made to ensure peace in the state.
“Happily, with this Joint Patrol Team in place, we will attain peaceful coexistence among farmers and herders and with that in place we will soon have the people displaced by the crisis return to their ancestral homes.”