At least, 100 people have been killed in four council wards of Kastina-Ala Local Government Area of Benue State at the weekend after gunmen unleashed terror on communities.
It was gathered that over 100 dead bodies have been recovered from many villages in the four council wards where the gunmen attacked simultaneously between Saturday and Sunday.
A spokesman of the Kastina-Ala council chairman, Tertsea Benga, alleged that the gunmen stormed several communities in the Mbayongo council ward in Katsina-Ala LGA about noon on Saturday and burnt down houses.
He listed the initially affected villages to include Vingir, Tse Nyipila and Tse Guji all in Mbayongo ward, adding that the attackers proceeded to Kenvanger in Mbatyula council ward on Sunday afternoon.
Most of the corpses were recovered from the bush.
Benga further recalled that half of the communities in one of the affected locality, Yooyo council ward in the same Katsina Ala LGA, had earlier been sacked by the alleged armed invaders who killed many people then and in the latest invasion.
Confirming the incident, the Chairman of Kastina-Ala LGA, Alfred Atera, said that over 100 people have been killed within the weekend in the four council wards of Mbayongo, Yooyo, Utange and Mbatyula/Mberev in a coordinated attack.
Atera blamed the attack on the collaboration between suspected armed herders and ‘Gana boys’ [loyalists of the slain Benue’s wanted criminal kingpin, Terwase Akwaza, popularly known as ‘Gana’], adding that security personnel, though doing their best, were however overwhelmed.
“More than 100 people have been killed in different places.
“They [attackers] are killing and dropping as they are going on their way. Some people were able to claim the corpses for burial.
“I told the military that the attackers have developed a strategy; they are not attacking one place.
“If they attack a place now, the next thing you hear is that they are in Yooyo and at the same time they are attacking Utange, so the military is going here and there.
“There is no military connivance, but I’m suspecting the existence of bandits here and I think they are trying to win cheap popularity,” Atera said.
Meanwhile, the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) for Benue Command, DSP Catherine Anene, has not responded to calls or text messages as of the time of filing this report.
•Text, excluding headline, courtesy of Daily Trust