Some unknown gunmen suspected of being fulani herdsmen have reportedly killed at least twenty-eight people in a fresh attack in a community in Benue State.
The assailants have been terrorising the Mbawa Council Ward in the Guma Local Government Area (LGA) of Benue State from last Sunday through Wednesday evening (yesterday).
The latest development has raised eyebrows among residents as they accused men of the Nigerian Army and Police of complicity in the continuous attack in Guma LGA.
According to SaharaReporters, a resident of the area, Barnabas confirmed the ongoing attacks on the Mbawa Council Ward, regretting that soldiers and policemen brought to protect the people did nothing to stop the herdsmen wielding sophisticated weapons.
The resident further alleged that the police operatives are demanding N100,000 to search for the corpses of those killed on their farmlands.
“Since 2018 up till today, our community and other Communities in Guma local government have been under Fulani herdsmen attacks. But now it is getting worse, especially for two weeks now, we have not rested in this community.
“Between Sunday and Wednesday, they have killed 28 persons. On Wednesday, being yesterday, they killed seven; on Tuesday, they killed eight; on Monday, they killed seven; and on Sunday, it was six they killed. So that is how it continues, it has become a daily massacre, and it is even close to Internal Displaced Camp (IDPs) in Daudu in Mbawa Council Ward, and the army camp is also there. In fact, soldiers can see those Fulanis with weapons, and they will not do anything.
“Last week, the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) in the Guma police division; I don’t know how he managed to get the Fulanis and called all our chiefs and some elders for a meeting with the Fulanis. At the meeting, he told our people that the Fulanis want to come and live in our community and that we should allow them to live with us,” Barnabas reportedly said.
“There is military and police presence, and every day, they are killing our people; not one, not two, not three. Every day the killing continues, and the federal government and security agencies are not saying anything. This is how people are dying every day. This is genocide; they want to wipe us out.”
He explained further that four of the seven persons the assailants killed last Thursday were volunteer guards, and three were our comrades.
“They were killed, and one was found, and two are still in the bush. It is now that the people are preparing to use vehicles to go for the second time to look for their corpses, and security agents are here. We even went to the police station here, and DPO asked that we should look for N100,000 to give them to escort us to look for their corpses,” he said.
Barnabas lamented further, explaining that when they went to the bush with some soldiers and policemen to recover the corpses of those killed, the security operatives asked them not to go further that Fulanis were in the forest nearby with guns.
“How did they know? For me the security agencies are accomplices in the ongoing killings in our communities,” the citizen said.
By Richard Ogunsile