Benue: Tears, tension as three killed in Fulani/Tiv farmers crisis
Suspected Fulani herdsmen stormed Tse Akaa village, Ugondo Mbanar District of Logo Local Government Area of Benue State Sunday afternoon, leading to the killing of three persons.
Governor Samuel Ortom confirmed this on Monday while speaking with newsmen in his office in Makurdi.
Our correspondent reliably gathered that trouble started Sunday afternoon when the villagers challenged the herdsmen who were moving their cattle away from the area.
Sources said the development raised fear among the villagers who thought that the herdsmen’s movement was an attempt to reinforce and attack the village.
It was gathered that the herders resisted the villagers, and the incident snowballed into a serious fighting.
An eyewitness who identified himself as Terver said the herdsmen, without provocation, launched the attack on the villagers around 5pm at the time some of the villagers were coming out from Sunday evening service.
He, however, denied that the villagers’ action triggered the crisis, saying, some of the villagers were coming out of evening service when the herders began to shoot sporadically at them, and in the process, three persons died.
Terver added that several persons were injured and many others missing.
He said that many people were presently taking refuge at a nearby village.
The source alleged that the attackers came from the Taraba axis, through Abaji, Mbamar, Ugondo and emerged at Akaa, shooting sporadically at the village market square.
The State Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Moses Yamu, who confirmed the report said the suspected Fulani herdsmen who were relocating from the area as a result of the onset of the rainy season had a clash with the villagers.
“Three persons were killed in the process, but the Police immediately mobilised to the area and I can assure you that peace has been restored there.”
Governor Ortom, who confirmed the incident, enjoined both farmers and herders to always show patience.Punch