Fear Grips Benue Residents over Herdsmen Attack


By George Okoh in Makurdi

Palpable fear of further herdsmen attack has gripped residents of some parts of Logo Local Government Area of Benue State as thousands of people were seen leaving the areas.  

Speaking to reporters yesterday on the situation on Friday, a community leader, Joseph Anawa who decried the recent attack said that massive destruction of crops and thatched houses was still going on till early hour of yesterday.

 Anawa said six communities had been razed down completely namely; Tsegi, Tse Jibo, Tse Abiem, Tse Aku, Tyo Affiah and Tse Ajim.

According to him, “there is no casualty for now, apart from the killing on Thursday  but there are a lot of people macheted,  many have run away into the bush with varying degrees of injuries, their cattle have also destroyed farm crops like; yam, rice, guinea corn and soya beans.

“You know that the settlement attacked now had been attacked before, so what the villagers did was to build thatched houses all which have been burnt down again.”

Anawa said that there had been influx of herdsmen with hundreds of thousands of cows in the council area adding that the cattle were still grazing in the council area against the anti-open grazing law.

According to him, “the anti-grazing law is not effective in this area, because there is nobody to enforce the new law; there are no security men on ground aside the usual ones and the vigilante members are handicapped because the herdsmen are armed with sophisticated weapons.”

The community leader claimed, “Ironically, Taraba State had deployed detachment of security men in two of their towns located along Benue/Taraba border that is Arufu and Akwara leaving the entire Logo and other boundary communities in Benue State.”

Also confirming the latest incident in the council, chairman of the local government, Hon. Richard Nyajo said six settlements in the council area had been attacked, adding that cattle were still grazing in the council area despite the new law.

He added that policemen had been deployed to the council area to beef up security.

The state Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, ASP, Moses Yamu when contacted said he was not aware of another attack on communities in the local government area.

He explained that the killing of a man on Thursday morning at a fish pond in the council area was done while the herdsmen were moving out of the state.

 “Unlike the previous attacks when the herdsmen would invade communities and attack, the incident on Thursday was that the herdsmen were moving away from the state as a result of the anti-grazing law and met the man fishing and killed him.”

 He added that security men had been deployed to all the flash points within the state to beef up security.