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17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue (Photos/Graphic Video)

17 persons who were killed by armed herders’ attack in Mbakyor at Mbalom council ward in Gwer-East Local Government Area of Benue State have been buried.

The victims were given a mass burial on Tuesday, April 9, 2024, in the community after an interdenominational service.

The marauding herdsmen invaded the community on March 7, 2024, killing the victims, including a retired WO2 Army Officer and a boy.

It was gathered that two out of the 17 farmers were earlier buried, as their corpses were fast decomposing due to the gruesome way they were murdered by their assailants.

Speaking during the burial, Benue State Governor, Hyacinth Alia, who was represented by his deputy, Sam Ode, stated that one of the best solutions to end the incessant attacks by armed herders in Benue communities was the formation of vigilante groups.

“Today is a sad day in the history of Benue State; to line up caskets like this is unacceptable. I am so sad, and my heart is heavy to see this kind of spectacle that shouldn’t have happened,” he said.

“Security is not for government alone because there is no one that can protect you like yourself; you need to have a Joint Security Taskforce or vigilante groups that would be properly profiled and handed over to the government to handle them. That is the solution to the insecurity we are facing in the state,”

The governor also pledged to construct the road that passed through the axis to ease the movement of security agencies to the area in times of emergencies, adding that the community was also ripe for a police station.

The governor, however, promised to personally meet with the families of the bereaved after the burial and prayed against a reoccurrence of the same.

Elias Audu, member of Benue House of Assembly, representing Gwer East, wondered why despite the availability of fighter planes to tackle such attacks, security did not live up to their billings

He advised that the relevant security agency should be reprimanded because they would have intervened in the crisis, using fighter helicopters in such a situation, adding that they didn’t when his people were under siege for over 3 hours.

President of the Masev Development Association, Prof. Vitalis Tarhule, noted that the primary responsibility of government was the protection of lives and property, even as he appealed to the government to endeavour to protect the people.

He added that similar attacks had occurred in 2014, 2018 and 2024, bringing to a total of about 40 lives that were lost, insisting that there was a need to establish a security post in Mbaikyor to check the unwholesome activities of armed herders.

Chairman of the Association of Mbaikyor Sons in diaspora, Simon Kofi, told the governor that his people had apprehended two herders and handed them over to the police due to their nefarious activities.

He explained that their crime was that they told the herders not to come back to the community again, a situation which prompted the attack on his kinsmen.

17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue
17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue
17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue
17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue
17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue
17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue
17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue
17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue
17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue
17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue
17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue
17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue
17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue
17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue
17 victims of herdsmen attacks get mass burial in Benue

 

CREDIT: LIB

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