About 15 persons were feared dead and many others declared missing on Sunday morning after suspected armed herdsmen attacked Igama village in Edumoga Ehaje, Senator Abba Moro’s community, in Okpokwu Local Government Area of Benue state.
It was reported that the invaders who stormed the community in their numbers at about 7am also razed and pulled down all the houses in the besieged community.
“They invaded Igama this morning when the people were preparing to attend Sunday morning Church Service. They came well armed and anyone they caught up with was killed.
“Though we cannot precisely say the number of persons killed because corpses are still being recovered, but from the information we have 15 person may have been killed and several others are still missing. Nine corpses have so far been recovered but the search for more of the corpses is still ongoing,” he said.
When contacted, the Chairman of the LGA, Mrs. Amina Audu who confirmed the incident lamented that the attack was unprovoked.
The Council Chairman who said she was at the Divisional Police Office at Okpoga the Local Government Headquarters to receive the recovered corpses of those killed said a total of nine corpses had been moved to the mortuary while the search for more was ongoing and would continue into the night as many were still missing and unaccounted for.
Mrs. Audu who decried the attack disclosed that the armed herders stormed the community in their hundreds.
She said: “I am at the Okpoga Police Station as I speak with you and I can confirm that we have received nine corpses that have been moved to the mortuary but the number could be far more than that because we learnt they chased the people into the bushes and killed them there.
“The armed herders invaded the community about 7am today. I was told that they were in their numbers, over 200 of them stormed the community. The people ran for their lives and anyone they caught was killed.
“Besides, they also pulled down all the houses that were in Igama community. As I speak with you no house is standing in the community.
“It is a sad day for us and we do not know where the people came from. But I recall that in January a similar incident happened in that village. The herders had at the time attacked that community which led to the death of a member of the community while two of the attackers were killed.
“After that incident we ensured that there was peace in the area and no such thing occurred again until this morning when this incident happened. We have beefed up security in the community.
“Affected women and children have also been taken to Ojapo the Ward Headquarters for safety and I am heading there to ensure that they are in good condition.”
Also contacted the Police Public Relations Officer, Superintendent, SP, Catharine Anene who confirmed the development said, “I am yet to receive details from officers who went to the scene.”