Thousands of people in Kwande local government area of Benue State have fled their ancestral home for safty and fear of being killed by suspected armed herdsmen who in the past one week launched sustained attacks on over 12 communities killing 50 farmers.
We gathered from the locals that the herdsmen invaded the communities and killed over 50 persons while scores sustained varying degrees of injuries and burning down of houses and barns.
The attacks which started after the presidential and National Assembly (NASS) elections in over 12 communities of Moon, Mbaikyor, Mbadura Ilyav, Ugbe, Iyon, Ityuluv, Injov Tyopaver, Kendev, Maav among others.
A source in the area, who identified himself as Tersur, said the marauding herdsmen launched the attacks from Moon and spread to other communities surrounding the area and chased all the inhabitants away from their ancestral homes.
The public relations officer of “Operation Whirl Stroke (OPWS), Flight Lieutenant D.O. Oquah, told newsmen that the force commander, Major Gen. Kelvin Aligbe, earlier yesterday held a meeting with the traditional rulers in the area and the leadership of Miyetti Allah on how they can resolve the Issues.
Also, a former Kwande local government area chairman, Bem Tseen, told our correspondent that he lost three family members in the attack
He said, “We were at home when the suspected herdsmen started attacking our communities from different fronts. We have boundaries with Cameroon, Taraba State and Katsina-Ala LGA.
“They are attacking our people from the Abande Anwase side, several people have been killed and many displaced. From the Taraba end, around Kashimbila area they are attacking and killing our people. So many people have been killed. Kwande LGA is in a state of confusion as we speak”
The Benue State secretary of Miyetti Allah Ibrahim Galma said the herdsmen had a confrontation with farmers in the area that resulted in killings over alleged confiscation of their animals.