Two troops, three civilians killed in Plateau, Benue attacks
The military outfit in Plateau, Operation Safe Haven (OPSH), has confirmed the death of two of its officers in a fresh attack following the mass burial on Tuesday of 29 persons in Bassa council area of the state.
The spokesman, Major Adam Umar, who confirmed the development, said two others were receiving treatment in an undisclosed hospital.
He said; “There was a clash between the tribes, Irigwe and Fulani where both of them were trading allegations and accusations today (yesterday) which resulted in the clash.
“The situation is under control now. Eight persons were arrested from both sides. We have also recovered ammunition. Two of our men lost their lives in the clash while two are in the hospital now receiving treatment.
“We have reinforced security within the area. We now have a fighter jet which has also been introduced to enhance surveillance so that any troublemaker is picked up by the military. There have also motorcycles to pierce through difficult terrains as well as vehicles.
“As I speak, the leaders of the two warring factions are at the Government House for a serious stakeholders’ meeting at the instance of the state government.”
The youths reportedly mobilised yesterday morning to vent their anger by allegedly setting ablaze houses of herdsmen in the locality. The herders, in turn, responded leading to sporadic shooting in Rafiki village.
The incident, according to an eyewitness, started around 5:00a.m. with four locals attacked before fleeing the area. He noted that one person died while the remaining critically injured three people had been admitted at the Bingham University Teaching Hospital in Jos.
According to him, what really irked the herdsmen was the arrest of four of theirs, armed with AK 47 rifles, by the police on Tuesday.
He said houses were burnt, gunshots heard, as natives flee homes for safer places.
He disclosed that the scene was close to Dong village and Wild Life Park, two kilometers away from Jos, the capital city, expressing the fear that the crisis might engulf the city if mishandled.
But as the Irigwe youths allegedly started the offensive, the OPSH operatives swung into action and arrest the situation.
In a related development, suspected herdsmen, on Tuesday, killed a Catholic catechist at Tse Orogbo, while his brother-in-law, Ayem Mbakuur, escaped unhurt in Benue. The two were said to be heading for the 6.30a.m. Mass when the attack occurred.
Same day, two brothers – Aondowase and Ahanbee Uma – were reportedly ambushed and killed by herders in Guma council area of the state.
The Guardian gathered from locals at Yelewata that the two bodies were recovered by youths after an alarm to the police after being deposited at an undisclosed morgue.
The victims were said to be returning from Yelewata market on a motorbike around 8:00p.m. when they ran into an ambush by the herdsmen who later set their motorcycle ablaze.
A community source, who pleaded anonymity, told The Guardian that one of the survivors, Orihyev Nyaga, shot on the left hand, said he was returning from the market on a motorcycle when he ran.