From Tony Osauzo, Benin
Seven people, including farmers, have been reportedly killed by gunmen suspected to be herdsmen in Edo State.
The killings are said to have occurred on Wednesday when the gunmen attacked Ugboke, Oshodi, Okokodo, Ariyan and Yoruba camp in Ovia North-East Local Government Area of the state.
Four of the victims were said to be returning from their farm when they were shot dead.
An indigene of the area, Mrs Janet Ighodaro, said the suspected herdsmen took over the popular (Yoruba camp) located in Ovia North-East as a base to launch an attack into various communities in our state.’
She said she was lucky to escape stray bullets flying over the air as she ran for safety to take refuge with her family in Benin, adding that the suspected gunmen shot sporadically.
Ighodaro who lamented that security presence in the locality was zero, said the gruesome attack on the camp and communities was reported to the police.
She said the policemen who arrived in the area yesterday only stopped at Okokhua community and instructed affected communities to bring the dead bodies to them at Okokhuo.
She called on security agents to come to their rescue as a matter of urgency.
Confirming the incident, the spokesman for the Edo State Police Command, SP Chidi Nwabuzor, said all efforts were being made to arrest the perpetrators.
‘The State Police Command is aware of the incident that happened within the jurisdiction of Ekhiadolor Divisional Police Command. The DPO and his operatives visited the crime site and evacuated the bodies and moves are on to ensure that place is calm and lives return to normalcy.
‘Also, the Police is carrying out its investigation to effect the arrest of the criminal herdsmen who perpetrated the dastardly acts. The command is bent on using every legal means to fish out the criminals,’ he added.