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Govt, police deny reports of fresh killings in Kogi

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Controversy has continued to trail reports of renewed attacks on some Kogi communities.

The Punch newspapers reported that a traditional ruler, the Onu Agbenema, Musa Edibo, and his wife were killed, while several houses were burnt down by suspected herdsmen in separate attacks on Agbenema, Aj’Ichekpa, Opada and Iyade villages in Omala Local government of the state on Monday.

According to the report, attackers who were allegedly armed with sophisticated weapons hid in the bushes around these villages from were they reportedly launched deadly attacks on their targets.

But when PREMIUM TIMES contacted the commissioner of police in the state, Ali Janga, he said no such killings happened in the state.

“I’m not aware and it is not true, there was no attack in any part of Kogi state.”

Also, the chief press secretary to the state governor, Petra Onyegbule, said she was briefed by the state security adviser on the matter and he confirmed to her that the reports were false.

“I reliably gathered that there was no attack on any of the villages in Kogi State,” she said.

She said the “latest attack in the state was a week ago” but the governor had already visited the communities and is set to constitute a panel of enquiry to investigate the root of the crises.

According to reports, natives who narrated the event told journalists that suspected herdsmen set the houses ablaze and opened fire on the fleeing inhabitants, allegedly slit victims’ throats and cut off their vital parts.

The reports also suggests that the administrator of Omala local government, Ibrahim Aboh, was lucky to have escaped by the whiskers.

Residents said soldiers who were drafted to curtail the herdsmen’s rampage allegedly refused to do so.

Less than two weeks ago, suspected herdsmen attacked some communities in Kogi state which led to the death of 32 people.

The governor, Yahaya Bello, last Friday visited the communities for assessment.

Nigerians have been dealing with a spate of attacks carried out by suspected cattle herders with well over 200 victims dead since January 2018. Benue and Plateau have been worst hit.

Fulani communities have also been attacked in the Mambila Plateau area of Taraba State where lives and properties worth millions were lost.

President Muhammadu Buhari recently visited Benue, Taraba, Plateau and Yobe, states that are facing security challenges.

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