In the previous 48 hours, new attacks on several towns in Benue State are believed to have murdered 43 people and burned nearly 50 dwellings.
In two separate attacks on towns in Benue State’s Guma Local Government Area on Tuesday, roughly 13 people were slain, including a three-month-old baby.
The attack came just 24 hours after accused herders slaughtered eight people, including two humanitarian workers, in the same local government region.
According to local accounts, a bus carrying mourners returning from a burial in Umenger was assaulted by gunmen near Torkula village, resulting in the deaths of three people and the treatment of two more who were shot.
According to reports, the three-month-old baby was shot in the chest, while his mother, who narrowly escaped the attack, was hit in the lap.
In addition, gunmen alleged to be herdsmen assaulted the Udei Branch hamlet on Tuesday night, killing eight people, according to reports.
Caleb Abs, Chairman of Guma LGA, confirmed the attacks on his council, saying 13 people were slain in two different attacks on Udei Branch and Torkula.
“It is true that there was an attack yesterday. There was a burial in Torkula and people who were coming back from the burial came under attack and about five people were killed.
“At about 10pm, yesterday, there was another attack at Branch Ude where about eight people were killed, totalling about 13 people, only yesterday.
“Two people were injured according to the information I received, and they are now receiving treatment in the hospital,” Aba said.
When called, DSP Catherine Anene, a Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), claimed she had not yet been briefed on the attack and promised to phone Daily Sun as soon as she did.
In a similar occurrence, six persons are believed to have been slain in a fresh communal conflict between the Ochoro and Bonta communities in Benue State’s Konshisha Local Government Area.
The Bonta-Okpute crisis erupted in April of this year, culminating in the deaths of 12 soldiers stationed in the area to maintain peace and order.
When called, DSP Catherine Anene, a Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), claimed she had not yet been briefed on the attack.
As a result, the military sacked Bonta and adjourned communities in order to retrieve the weaponry of the dead troops.
Since then, the area had returned to routine, until a new crisis erupted on Monday in Ochoro, a neighboring town, in which local sources allege that over 30 people, including children and women, were killed.
Our sources, who did not want to be identified, reportedly stated that about 43 people feared dead, 50 homes were burned down during the incident.
When contacted by phone, Chairman of Oju LGA, Clement Ona, indicated that while he was aware of the problem, it occurred in Konshisha LGA and not in his council.
James Ijirgba, the Konshisha Council Chairman, confirmed the new situation in his council, but said he was waiting for a detailed report from the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) in the region.
DSP Catherine Anene, the Benue Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), claimed she had not yet been briefed on the incident.