Gunmen Kill Monarch, 23 Farmers In Benue.
A monarch, and 23 farmers have been killed and scores injured in a fresh attack in the wee hours of Monday by suspected gunmen in Guma and Tarka local government areas of Benue State.
This is even as the Logo council chairman, Comrade Terseer Agber, said the gunmen invaded the home of a traditional ruler, Zaki Unongo Shayange of Ikyaan village, Ukemberagya council ward of Gaambetiev and shot him dead.
Corroborating the council chairman, a community leader, Joseph Anawa, told LEADERSHIP in a telephone message that on Monday at about 7:15pm some herdsmen blocked Anyiin-Tse Kile Road in Ukemberagya council ward of Gaambetiev and shoot at anyone on sight.
He said one of the victims, Aondoakura Gwa Kile who escaped the attack reported that the terrorists made away with some Baja motorcycles.
According to him, “The gunmen also invaded the house of the monarch and shot him dead while several other people who were macheted are receiving treatment at NKST Hospital Anyiin.”
When contacted, the police public relations officer (PPRO) Catherine Anene said she and the commissioner of police were at the scene of the killings. She said she could not call from the scene and promised to call back. However, at the time of filing this report she was yet to respond.
Meanwhile, Governor Samuel Ortom who confirmed the killings lamented that women, children and other members of the Benue communities were attacked and killed by the terrorists in their sleep without provocation.
The governor who was visibly angry however directed the people to rise up to defend themselves henceforth.
According to him, eight persons were mowed down on Monday night by terrorists who invaded Mbadwem in Guma local government area, while 15 persons were also killed in Tiortyu Tarka, the same night in Tarka LGA.
The governor who spoke through the chief press secretary informed that scores of other people who escaped the attack with varying degrees of injuries are receiving treatment in an undisclosed hospital in the state.
He said, “This is becoming increasingly glaring everyday that my people are now an endangered species and so we can no longer wait for help from anywhere. My people will have to rise up to the occasion to defend themselves and their heritage.”
He added, “We are law-abiding citizens. We have cried for help against these invaders but nothing is forthcoming. We are left alone and it looks like it is a deliberate strategy. Now we have only one option; to defend ourselves or go extinct. This is a case for our survival.”
He said his people have been accommodating of other people in their land but their hospitality has been misconstrued as weakness.
He declared that they are not a conquered people and will never be. He insisted that they are free born citizens of Nigeria.
Governor Ortom enjoined security operatives to do more in crime prevention and protection of lives and property in the land just as he urged the people to cooperate with security agencies to flush out the undesirable elements in their communities.
The state government, he said, will not shy away from its commitment to provide welfare and security for its citizens.