Attacks, killings heighten in Benue despite Alia’s ultimatum to Fulani herdsmen

By our correspondent

As days continue to pass and the ultimatum given to the Fulani herdsmen to leave Benue lasts. the violent herdsmen have also continued to attack and kill the innocent Benue people without any form of provocation.

Few days ago, the Benue State Governor Hyacinth Alia, who expressed worry over the influx of violent herdsmen in the state, gave a two week ultimatum for the herdsmen to leave the state.

The Governor through his Chief Press Secretary, Tersoo Kula, after a security meeting in Makurdi wondered why the herdsmen were coming into the state in their numbers and gave them two weeks to leave the state even as a committee to ensure compliance was also put in place.

While the ultimatum lasts, the Fulani herdsmen have continued to attack and kill the people of the state without any reason.

In Udeku community Mbaikyor, Mbadura,Yaav council ward of Kwande Local Government Area there was an attack by gunmen suspected to be Fulani herdsmen which left not less than six persons dead with over 500 hundred houses reduced to ashes.

A fleeing resident of Udeku community, Lawrence Akerigba, said the herders trooped into the area through a Taraba settlement, Kashimbilla bordering Benue and on the other side through the Cameroonian borders to carry out their nefarious activities.

He said with displeasure that the herders first came pretending for a peace agreement with the villagers and thereafter settled at Yariwya community within a period of two weeks within which they studied the community before coming back to launch an attack on Yariwya, then proceeded to Mbaav,Mbadura Council ward killing people, burning their houses and stealing food items.

In Udei, Guma Local Government Area, Fulani herdsmen came unannounced attacked the villagers leaving one man dead even as residents fled for their lives.

The story is not different from the one in Gwer west Local Government Area, where the attackers came unprovoked and attacked Tse-Ortwar about three kilometers away from Naka the headquarters of the Local Government.

A second class traditional ruler, Chief Daniel Abomtse, who confirmed the attack, lamented why the herdsmen would choose to attack people when they were least expected and called on his people to be vigilant in their communities.

A similar incident happened in Agagbe also in Gwer West, where a farmer was attacked and killed on his farm while others on the same farm ran for their safety

In Ukum Local Government Area, one Hilenen Luter was killed in Boikyo when the herdsmen attacked the community. Others in the community fled to the neighbouring communities to save their lives.

Given the incessant attacks and killings by the herdsmen, a village head in Makurdi, Chief Boniface Tor has opined that the state government should not just fold her arms to watch the perpetration of violence on the people but work toward stopping them from attacking and killing the armless people of the state.

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