The Chairman of the Katsina-Ala Local Government Area of Benue State, Mr. Alfred Atera, has alleged that over 100 persons were at the weekend killed in four wards of the local government area by suspected herdsmen.
Atera, who spoke on phone with reporters on Monday, listed the council wards to include, Yooyo, Utange, Mbaturan/Mberev and Mbayongo.
He said due to the killings, the people were trooping out in large numbers from the wards as the herdsmen continued to attack and kill residents.
He added: “I have videos of the incident. The herdsmen have developed a strategy. They are not attacking one place. If they attack Kwaanondo, the next thing you hear that they are attacking is Utange. The military is going here and there but before they could get there, the herdsmen have finished and gone to the next point. So, that is the situation in Katsina-Ala.
“We have reported to all security authorities about what is going on. I am in a meeting with my traditional rulers and putting heads together to see what we can do at our own level.
“I am not suspecting any military connivance but I am suspecting bandits – the existing bandits. I think they are trying to get cheap popularity. They are conniving to do that so that we could consider them, which we have refused to do. It is better to die by Fulani than allow our boys to kill us. The Gana remnants have connived with herdsmen to cause havoc and unrest in our area,” the council boss stated.
Meanwhile, efforts to get the police in Benue to confirm the killings failed as the spokesperson of the command, Anene Sewuese Catherine, refused to take her phone calls.
However, a source close to the military special force, ‘Operation Whirl Stroke(OPWS)’ said there was an issue in the area but denied any knowledge of the killing of people.
George Okoh in Makurdi