MACBAN disowns Benue killings, canvasses arrest of notorious rustler
The Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) in Benue State yesterday said that its members have no hand in the killings of Tiv-speaking natives of Logo and Ukum local government areas of the state.
Daily Trust reports that 10 villagers were killed in different locations of the two local government areas between Saturday and Monday following fresh strikes by gunmen alleged to be Fulani herders.
The State coordinator of MACBAN, the umbrella body for Fulani herders, Garus Gololo, told our correspondent in Makurdi that four members of the association also lost their lives in the wake of the violence during the weekend.
Gololo who blamed repeated incidents few weeks ago on continuing reprisals from both warring factions, however identified the fresh attacks as the handiwork of one certain Fulani militia kingpin, simply known as ‘Ghana.’
He said, “The fresh attacks came from one notorious cow rustler of Fulani extraction. He has imported thousands of militias to Ukum and Logo areas. They are the ones who have laid siege on the area, killing people from both sides. Four Fulani herdsmen were also killed at the weekend and their animals taken away by the gang. We are also crying out for government’s intervention.”
He urged the government to collaborate with law enforcement agents to declare Ghana wanted so that he would be arrested and made to face the wrath of the law.
In another development, spokesman of the police, ASP Moses Yamu, has debunked media reports that 81 people were killed in the area during recent attacks.
Yamu who contended that the reports were gross misrepresentation of the facts on ground, stated that a cumulative total of 22 people killed were recorded by the command between May 30 and June 20 in several attacks on some communities of Logo and Ukum areas.
“The total number of deaths recorded during the period was 22 and not 81 as reported,” he asserted.
Yamu said that mobile policemen had been fully deployed to affected areas and other volatile locations in the state to stem the tide while assuring residents to remain calm and report suspicious persons.