Again five kinsmen of Governor Samuel Ortom were at the early hours of Tuesday reportedly murdered in an attack on his hometown, Ahentse community in Ndzorov Council Ward of Guma Local Government Area, LGA, by suspected Fulani herdsmen.
Vanguard gathered from a source in the community who spoke on condition of anonymity that the attack which started at about 4am and lasted about two hours left some persons with severe injury.
According to the source, the attackers stormed the community from Awe LGA of Nasarawa state through Damkor and Iordye communities sneaking through the security personnel that were stationed on that axis of the state.
“They came into the community started shooting sporadically and as the people made attempt to escape some of them were gunned down and some sustained severe bullet injuries.
The painful aspect of this attack is that the community is less than five kilometers from Iordye where military and security personnel are stationed. The marauders just came and massacred our helpless people for no reasons whatsoever,” he said.
Confirming the development, the Chairman of Guma LGA, Mr. Clement Abah said “I am aware of the incident. It happened early Wednesday between 4am and 5:30 am, when some Fulani herders came from neighbouring Nasarawa State, Awe LGA precisely and attacked Ahentse village killing five persons and two sustained various degrees of injuries.
The injured persons are receiving treatment at the General Hospital, Gbajimba. As for the dead, I was there to witness and ensured that they were buried in order to reduce the tension caused by the attack,” he said.
Contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer, Superintendent, Cathrine Anene who confirmed the attack said investigation into the incident was ongoing.
Meanwhile Governor Samuel Ortom has expressed sadness over the incident and called on the federal government to synergise with his administration to step up a military operations that would flush out armed herdsmen from the neighbouring states bordering Benue
The Governor’s reaction was contained in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Nathaniel Ikyur issued Wednesday in Makurdi.
The Governor in the statement said “it is time the federal government further stepped up the military operations in states that share common boundaries with Benue state because these communities along the borders have become targets of the armed herders. It is time to end this unnecessary shedding of innocent blood and we can do it if we cooperate with each other.”
Governor Ortom recalled how he had been synergising with his counterparts by holding joint security and peace meetings to build confidence amongst the people so that they would live in peace with one another.
He however lamented that “the situation where killer herdsmen take shelter with our neighbours, sneak in and kill our people without provocation will not be tolerated any longer. Let the security agencies continue to cooperate with us in Benue to end this bloodletting. Let us dislodge these invaders from wherever they may be hiding for peace to return to our communities.”
While commending the security agencies for their steadfastness and commitment to ending the crisis the Governor called on Benue people to begin to arm themselves with “lawful weapons as presecribed by law and defend themselves against the Fulani invaders.”
“It is no longer fashionable to continue to cry out for help. We must now be at alert and ready to confront these killers. This is another way we can assist the security agencies in combating this menace since they are obviously overstretched beyond limits,” he added