About 10 persons were on Saturday reported killed during a renewed Fulani herdsmen and Tiv farmers crisis in Benue State, according to a news report by Nigerian Tribune.
According to an eyewitness, the crisis was said to have started on Friday, March 10, 2017 but snowballed into wanton destruction of lives and property at Mkgovur village in Buruku Local Government Area of Benue State.
It was gathered that Fulani herdsmen stormed the village on Friday to stay but were resisted by the villagers who told them that they were not known to the people of the area.
The herders were said to have invaded the community around 8.00 a.m on Saturday with guns and cutlasses and entered into the residence of the villagers killing and maiming.
By the time the dust settled, about 10 persons were said to have been killed while several persons were injured in the attack.
One of the villagers who simply identified himself as Tyorsase told the newspaper’s correspondent that several persons were killed and dozens of people injured and taken to an undisclosed hospital in Gboko.
According to him, “I travelled to the village on Friday only to wake up early this morning to see Fulani herdsmen invading our village as early as 8.00 a.m; the men who were in large numbers were fully armed, shooting sporadically and they entered our houses shot people and macheted many.”
Speaking on the attack, Benue State chairman of Myetialla Allah Cattle Rearers Association of Nigeria, Mr Garus Gololo, told Sunday Tribune on phone that the herders were not indigenous Fulani, “they came from Taraba and went to Mkgovur village on Friday but were resisted by the villagers,” he said.
“It is our agreement now that any Fualni man not known to the host community be not allowed to stay in any community in Benue; so when the herders entered Mkgovur village the villagers refused to have them stay, I think this was what provoked them to have invaded the village this morning.”
When asked of the casualties, Gololo said, “I can not give the number of people who died but I have sent one of our members to go there for more details.”
The state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Assistant Superintendent of Police, Moses Yamu, in his reaction said that one person was killed and two others injured and taken to General Hospital in Gboko.
He explained in a statement sent to our correspondent that the head of Fulanis in the area, Mallam Ado Fulani Buruku had on Friday reported that some Tiv youths attacked and inflicted matchet cuts on two cows while grazing, which made the others cows to scatter into the bush in Benewura of Binev council ward in Buruku.
The PPRO further said that on the same Friday, the local vigilante commander brought one Tyowon Terkuma of Tse Mbakah ward and was injured on his right wrist by herders whose cattle was trying to enter his farm who was rushed to hospital, treated and discharged.
Yamu explained further that youths from Tongur allegedly attacked a Fulani camp and scattered the cattle at Mkgovur in Buruku where three persons were injured and one died while being rushed to General Hospital, Gboko.