At least eight people, including a mother and her four children, have been killed by gunmen suspected to be Herdsmen at Yelwata Community in Guma Local Government Area of Benue State.
The herdsmen also injured two persons and abducted one other person in the attack which they carried out at about 6p.m on Tuesday evening.
Speaking to journalists on the phone, Chairman of Guma LGA, Mr. Caleb Abah, said the attackers invaded the community on Yelwata market day while the people were still in the market and opened fire killing eight people and injuring others.
He stated that the attacked was unprovoked explaining that his people had no problems with the Herdsmen before the attack.
“Yesterday (Tuesday) was Yelwata market day and the people were still in the market around 6p.m when the Herdsmen came and started shooting sporadically. In the end, eight people were killed, two were injured and one person was abducted. He is yet to be released till now,” he said.
The council boss added that the injured have been taken to a private hospital for treatment since the doctors in government hospitals are still on strike.
A local who doesn’t want to be named described the attack as shocking saying but for the quick intervention of troops of the Operation Whirl Stroke (OPWS), and the police who stormed the area to repel the attackers, more people would have been killed.
The Commissioner of Police in the state, Akingbola Olatunji, has condemned the attack saying police teams have been detailed to the area for safe keeping.
The Commissioner who spoke through the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP Catherine Anene said, “yesterday, 24th August, 2021, at about 7:45pm, the police got information that unknown gunmen invaded Yelwata community and attacked the first compound that is nearest to the forest.
“Policemen immediately were sent to the area and were able to repel them.”
He, however, regretted that before the police arrived, the gunmen had shot six persons they met in the first house.
He said while the police took the six persons to the hospital, they were confirmed dead on arrival while two other persons were still receiving treatment.
The Next Edition reports that the Commissioner of Police has visited the community to condole with the community.
He assured the people of Yelwata that the police will continue to support them by deploying more men to cover up the loopholes.
“We will continue to safeguard lives and property of residents. We will not leave them in the hands of hoodlums,” he said adding that two police teams have been sent to Yelwata and more are still on their way.