By Peter Duru, Makurdi
Two Police officers, a University lecturer and two others were Thursday night reportedly murdered in separated attacks by armed herdmen and bandits on Yelewata and Jootar communities in Guma and Ukum Local Government Areas, LGAs of Benue state respectively.
The attackers of the police personel at Yelewata were said to have also made away with the riffles of their victims.
The attack is coming four days after a similar incident in the community claimed the lives of 16 timber dealers when they were waylaid in the bush by the marauders.
A source in the area who spoke on condition of anonymity disclosed the police personnel were part of the team on patrol of the area in the wake of the recent attacks to ensure security in the community that borders Nasarawa state.
“They were on patrol in the area at about 10pm when they were ambushed by the armed herdsmen who have been tormenting the communities. Two of them were killed and we learnt that the attackers also fled into the forests with the riffles of the slain police personel.”
Meanwhile it was gathered from a source in Ukum LGA that the University lecturer in the Department of Mass Communication, Federal University Wukari, Taraba state, Fred Ackaayar who at a time reported for a local tabloid in Makurdi was reportedly gunned down alongside his friends Aondoayange Apever and Kachina Shiaondo at Jootar, Mbaterem in Mbayenge Council Ward of the Ukum LGA.
The source disclosed that the victims were killed at a local bar very close to Federal Quarantine Check Point were they gathered to relax and share some drinks.
He said: “The attackers were three and they came around 7pm on a Bajaj motorbike. They got to were the victims were seated and opened fire on them after which they fled. Apart from the lecturer and his two friends that were killed some others also sustained injuries.
“Everyone is still surprised that this attack happened because there is a subsisting embargo on the use of motorbikes in the three neighbouring Ukum, Katsina-Ala and Logo LGAs because of this kind of incidents and it is strange that the bandits could beat the security in the area and perpetrate the heinous crime.”
Contacted, the Benue state Police Public Relations Officer, Superintendent, SP, Catherine Anene in a massage confirmed the murder of the two police officers in Guma LGA but stated that she was yet to receive information on the Ukum incident.
“I received information that two policemen died in an operation at Makurdi-Lafia road but I am yet to receive details please,” her message read.