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Gana boys kill traditional ruler, 10 others in Benue

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Gana boys kill traditional ruler, 10 others in Benue

By Aboje Anefu, Makurdi

Gunmen suspected to be loyal to the late notorious criminal, Terwase Akwaza, have reportedly killed eleven mourners, among them a traditional ruler in Benue State on Saturday.

The tragic incident took place at Imande Mbakenge, Mbache Council Ward in Katsina Ala Local Government Area of the state.

Report from locals in the area indicated that people had come from all walks of life to bury a couple when gunmen rode into their midst with motorcycles and started shooting indiscriminately, killing eleven people on the spot.

One of the local who did not want his identity to be mentioned for fear of victimisation said, “It was at the burial of Mr and Mrs Atenoe Agbev, from Imande Mbakange, Mbache Council Ward in Katsina-Ala Local Government of Benue State that some bandits killed the eleven people.

“The group just came on three motorcycles, well armed. Immediately they got there (burial place), they went straight to where a traditional kindred head named Zaki Ityav Gande was seated, they searched him, took away some money and then shot him and opened fire at the people and killed 11 persons at the burial ceremony.

Gana boys kill traditional ruler, 10 others in Benue

Chairman of the Local Government Council, Alfred Atera, who confirmed the attack on mourners, said that nine people were killed.

Atera attributed the invasion by bandits and killing of the people to the operation carried out by troops of Operation Whirl Stroke, OPWS, last Thursday and Friday where three bandits were killed.

“Nine persons were killed at a burial on Saturday. It was a reprisal. You know one of the boys, Junta was killed. It was a reprisal,” he said.

Atera said that three other people were critically injured with gun shots and were taken to undisclosed clinic for medical attention.

Speaking on the Saturday killing, Force Commander, Operation Whirl Stroke, Major General Kevin Aligbe confirmed the killings but did not mention any casualty.

General Aligbe dismissed the report that the attack on mourners was a reprisal to the killing of bandits by military during the week.

His words: “It is true that we are on operation around that area; the reason is that these guys (bandits) have been killing people and extorting people so whatever happened yesterday (Saturday) is not as a result of what we are doing because some of them (bandits) have submitted weapons within the last two weeks or something like that.

“They have just made up there minds that they are going to make the place unsafe to law abiding citizens .

“But in the next two weeks, we are going to get all of them, that is sure promise to Benue people.”

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