Suspected herdsmen kill 37 in fresh attack on Benue communities

Suspected herdsmen kill 37 in fresh attack on Benue communities

- About 50 suspected herdsmen attack Umenger village in Benue state

- Another attack by group of armed men on villages at Tomanyiin-Mbakpaase in Saghev council ward results in the deaths of three persons

- Protests in Makurdi over killing of priests, worshipers

An attack by suspected herdsmen on three Benue communities have reportedly led to the deaths of about 37 persons while several others have been injured and some still missing.

The Sun reports that villages which were targeted in the attacks included Tse Umenger in Mbadwem council ward, Mbakpaase in Saghev council ward as well as Tse-Ali in Mbawaar council ward all of Guma local government area of Benue state.

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A resident of Umenger said 15 people were killed in the community when heavily-armed bandits suspected to be herdsmen numbering over 50, stormed the Umenger village on Tuesday evening, April 23, and set the entire village on fire.

The source said another attack by another group of armed men hours later on villages at Tomanyiin-Mbakpaase in Saghev council ward resulted in the killing of three persons.

Similarly, in the early hours of Wednesday, April 25, the attackers were said to have stormed Tse-Ali in Mbawaar council ward killing 19 people while razing down many houses and food barns in the area.

Meanwhile, impromptu protests erupted in major areas of Makurdi, the Benue state capital as news of the killing of two priests and 17 worshipers by suspected armed herdsmen filtered into the town.

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Among the victims were two priests; Rev Fathers Joseph Gor and Felix Tyolaha, two primary school headmasters; Peter and Ape Chia, a secondary school principal; Michael Tor and 14 other worshipers.

The victims had gone to morning mass at St Ignatius Quasi Parish when their attackers who had laid ambush on the community attacked them around 5.30 am and killed them. The herdsmen extended their terror to other villagers burnt their houses numbering about 100.

Angered by the news, youths took to the streets, blocked roads and made bonfires which caused tension.

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