No fewer than six persons have been allegedly killed in a renewed crisis between farmers and Fulani herdsmen at Gbemacha ward in the Gwer Local Government Area of Benue State.
According to an eyewitness, the herdsmen had, in the last few weeks, besieged the community with herds of cattle numbering about 5,000, which have destroyed cassava farms in the area.
The source added, “In the past few weeks now, our community has witnessed an influx of cows coming in droves; in fact, they are more than 5000 and the irony of it is that they move into the cassava farms and feasted on them.
“This did not go down well with the youths of the area, who tried to resist them but were equally countered by the armed herdsmen, who attacked the community in their numbers and sacked the locals from their homes.”
He added that “about six persons have been killed leading to residents fleeing their homes.”
Speaking on the crisis at the NUJ secretariat in Makurdi, the Special Adviser to the State Governor, Bureau of Lands and Survey, Prof. Jonathan Uever, who hails from the area, described the attack as unprovoked.
Uever stated, “They were not provoked in any way. From what I gathered from my people, who have been giving me update on the crisis in the last three days, the herdsmen stormed Gbemacha council ward and everybody ran for their lives.
“They took over our community and broke into people’s houses, destroyed food barns and whatever food they found were burnt.
“After that, they went and hid near a popular well in the community, lying in wait for the people. The first person they saw was an elderly man, they shot and slaughtered him, including three others.”