Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
Several people including mourners were feared killed on Friday night by unknown gunmen at two communities within Katsina-Ala Local Government area of Benue State.
Although, the actual casualty figure in the two attacks is yet to be ascertained at the time of this report, sources in the area alleged that more than 30 persons may have been killed by the gunmen.
A source, Jerry Iorngeam who spoke with our corespondent by phone said some gunmen stormed the venue of the wake of Tor Gbev Ikue Amaafu, a community leader in Tongov Community in Katsina Ala local Government and opened fire on them allegedly killing about 20 people while some other sustained injuries.
Iorngeam said just while the people of the community were still mourning the late night attack, some unknown gunmen rode on a bajaj motorcycle and opened on Ikyulav Tiev Community in the same Katsina-Ala killing eight persons in the process.
“Early this morning unknown gunmen attacked one Ikyulav Tiev Community opposite Divine Love girls secondary school Katsina Ala on a bajagh motorcycle and opened fire killing 8 persons in the process.”
Asked what could have caused the attack, Iorngeam said it may not be unconnected with the Shitile /Ikyulav Tiev communal clashes.
Efforts to get the State Police Command to confirm the report failed as the PPRO, DSP Catherine Anene neither picked her call nor respond to text message sent to her at the time of this report.
However, council boss of Katsina-Ala, Mrs. Virginia Kpindi who confirmed the report said the number of death was far less than the number being quoted.
Kpindi who spoke to our correspondent by phone said more than three persons were killed in both attacks while others who were injured were receiving treatment at the hospital.
She blamed the incessant attacks in the area on youth restiveness and called on the youths to get engaged in useful ventures rather than taking to crime and fomenting violence.