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Herders kill 55 farmers in endless Benue attack

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Suspected armed herders in endless attacks on Agatu local government area of Benue State have killed a total of 55 farmers so far in cold blood from January 2024 to date.

The herders attacks started on January 18, 2024, and continued unabated, as they have displaced thousands of people who are now seeking refuge in neighbouring Kogi State, as well as many who are missing.

It was also gathered that, in the first attack, 32 corpses were recovered, eight corpses were recovered in the second attack, and the latest attack on Wednesday night claimed 15 people and is still counting, Leadership reported on Friday.

So far, the number of people killed in Agatu from January to date is 55, while an uncounted number of children were said to have been whisked away by the attackers.

The suspected armed herders took along with them the children of the deceased to an unknown destination after killing a large number of Agatu community members.

A member of the House of Assembly representing Agatu State constituency, Hon. Godwin Edoh, said another village in Agatu North, Ugboju Omaga, was attacked and 15 people were killed. The incident was confirmed in a text message.

“We are calling on the government and other security agencies to come to the aid of the Agatu people by chasing out the armed herders who are forcefully occupying the ancestral home of our people, but it seems all our cries have fallen on deaf ears, so we are just left at the mercy of God. What have my people done to deserve this inhuman and barbaric treatment? I totally condemn this attack on innocent people of Agatu who are bent on taking over and occupying our ancestral home by force,” he said.

A community resident who pleaded anonymity said the herders surrounded the villages on Wednesday night and were coming from different directions, so there was no way the people could run out.

Ogwumogbo, Ikpele, Ejima, and Okpokpolo have all deserted their homes, adding that yesterday’s attack was at Ogboju in Agatu and that they are still combing the bush to check for the corpses of missing persons. So far, 15 bodies of young men have been recovered, he said.

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