Benue Killings: Victim Losses 4 Wives, 18 Children

A livestock guard, Mr Akpenheen Amile, who sustained gunshot wounds in the January 2nd attack on villages in Guma, Benue State as cried out to the public about the loss of his four wives and 18 children.

He revealed that he had not been able to contact them after the attack.  Amile lamented to the News Agency Of Nigeria (NAN) in Markurdi saying;

“I am in physical pains from gunshot injuries, but such pains don’t hurt me like the inability to ascertain the fate of my four wives and 18 children,” Amile told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Makurdi.

Recall that about five villages in Guma and Logo Local Governments were attacked by unknown gunmen on Jan. 1 and 2.

According to the Benue State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), 73 people have so far been confirmed killed by the invaders.

Amile, who is married to five wives, told NAN that only his fifth wife was with him.

The livestock guard, who is being treated at the Benue State Teaching Hospital (BSUTH), said that he was shot on one of his legs.

“As it is, I don’t know whether they are among the dead or they have fled to some unknown destination for safety,” he said.

Amile, who claimed that the attackers were dressed in herdsmen attire, said that they arrived “around 5 p.m. and started shooting anyone on sight”.

Speaking through an interpreter, Amile said that he was with other Livestock Guards employed by the Benue Government to enforce the anti-open grazing law, when the gunmen descended on them.

“We were at our camp at a primary school at Iwer, in Guma, when the gunmen surrounded us and started shooting.

“It was while I was running for safety that I was shot on the leg. We had to flee because we were not armed. Besides, we were taken by surprise.

“They killed many Livestock Guards and many of us were wounded.

“Since the attack, I have not heard from my four wives and 18 children. Only my fifth wife is here with me. This is causing me sleepless nights; the situation is unbearable,” he said.

 

Alleged Herdsmen Killing Of 33 Persons Sparks Protest In Benue

Hundreds of youths on Wednesday stormed the popular Food Basket Roundabout in Makurdi to protest the alleged killing of at least 33 people by herdsmen in Benue State.

The protest led to a gridlock in the area, causing traffic obstruction for motorists travelling through the state capital to the north and southern regions of the country.

The aggrieved youths have called on President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene in what they described as “terrorist killings” in their state.

Some of them were in tears as a vehicle conveyed another corpse into the crowd to prove their claims of the ongoing killings, following a reported attack which occurred on Tuesday night.

The protest came barely 24 hours after the State Security Council meeting which held at the Government House in the state capital.

Addressing reporters shortly after the meeting on Tuesday, the state governor, Mr Samuel Ortom, said he had received reports of 20 persons allegedly killed by herdsmen in the state.

During an on-the-spot assessment visit to some of the affected communities, Governor Ortom said an additional 13 deaths were discovered, taking the number of those killed to 33.

The governor, who was addressing some members of the affected communities, said: “Mr President has been briefed about this development, all the security chiefs have been briefed, and our Security Council today directed that security men should come and protect lives and property in this community.

“So I want to appeal to you to be calm, to be law-abiding, and there is no going back on the law that we signed; by the grace of God, it will be implemented.”

The killing of another resident following Tuesday’s reported attack sparked the protest by the youths who have asked the President to come to their rescue.

In a bid to contain the protest, personnel of the Nigerian Police and Nigerian Army were caught up in a faceoff with the irate youths who insist on occupying the road all through the week.