From Scholastica Onyeka, Makurdi

The Benue State Government condemned, in strong terms, the killing of marketers and some villagers in Ukohol community of Guma Local Government Area of the state by suspected herdsmen in which 18 persons, including women and children below the age of two, were killed and others injured.

Recall that last Thursday, gunmen suspected to be herdsmen militia opened fire on marketers in Ukohol, Guma Local Government Area of Benue state and killed 10 persons.

The Chairman of the local government, Michael Uba, who confirmed the incident said 10 persons were killed in the market while eight others were killed in separate attacks in three other villages on the same day.

Senior Special Assistant to Governor Samuel Ortom on Animal Husbandry, Alhaji Shehu Tambaya, who condemned the act in Makurdi while speaking with our correspondent on Saturday, called on security agencies to investigate the incident and bring perpetrators to book.

He expressed shock at the audacity of the attackers saying the terrorists who hitherto invaded border communities at night are now attacking in broad daylight.

Tambaya urged security agencies to step up security at all public places pointing out that if they could enter a market to attack innocent villagers without provocation, they can do anything.

He stated that there was a need for stronger synergy between the police and the state vigilantes guards to prevent terrorists from invading and killing community members in the state.

Tambaya who lamented the market invasion said, “for some time, Benue people especially in Logo, Gwer West, Guma, Ukum, Agatu and other places cannot go to their farms.

“Now, are they also saying our people should not go to the market? This is sad. Benue is part of Nigeria and the federal government needs to rise up and protect the people,” Tambaya said.

The governor’s aide, therefore, called on Benue people to be security conscious and provide information on suspicious movements and persons to security agencies to enable them to nip criminal activities in the bud.

He assured that the state government is working closely with security agencies working in the state to ensure that the lives and property of the people are secured.

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Source: news