By Peter Duru, Makurdi

Three persons were Thursday morning reportedly abducted and two houses razed in a protracted communal dispute between Ihyarev and Kparev communities in Tyo Mu village in the outskirts of Makurdi Local Government Area of Benue state.

The crisis which has lingered over disputed land in the village had overtime led to the burning down of houses and properties belonging to the fueding parties.

It was gathered from a source in the area that the fresh crisis erupted in the community after three Kparev youths were allegedly abducted by Ihyarev youths which sparked angry protest and threats of reprisal.

He said, “the problem in Tyo Mu has been that of settlers and indigenous people. The Ihyarev people are the indigenes people while the Kparev are the settlers. But they have been on each others throat over the years leading to killings and burning down of houses.

“The present administration has made serious efforts to find lasting solution to the matter and everyone was cooperating until this latest crisis that erupted on Wednesday night till Thursday morning when three Kparev youths were allegedly abducted by Ihyarev youths which sparked angry protest and the burning of houses.

“The angry Kparev youths also took over the busy Makurdi-Gboko road threatening reprisal if their youths were not produced alive by their abductors.”

Confirming the development, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Security Matters, Lt. Col. Paul Hemba said “though we received the information this morning, but of course Tyo Mu has been a crisis area for a long time.

“The two communities have been on each other for a long time and the state government also set up a committee headed by the Secretary to the State Government to look into the problem. The committee is now at the point of submitting its report to the Governor, but all of a sudden early this morning we heard that three persons were abducted and two houses were burnt.

“The Kparev community whose people were abducted came out this morning to protest and in the process blocked the Makurdi-Gboko road to probably draw the attention of the government to the issue.

“But as we talk I have invited their leaders to my office and we are discussing to resolve the issue. And the blocked road has also been opened for vehicular movements.”

Contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer, Superintendent, SP, Catherine Anene confirmed the development.

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