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Hoodlums loot houses as residents abandon Benue troubled community

Hoodlums on Tuesday reportedly looted homes of some residents who fled communal crisis at North Bank vicinity of Makurdi metropolis in Benue State. Daily Trust…

Hoodlums on Tuesday reportedly looted homes of some residents who fled communal crisis at North Bank vicinity of Makurdi metropolis in Benue State.

Daily Trust had reported two people killed, two others wounded and many houses burnt after a communal crisis broke out between Tiv and Jukun natives on Easter Sunday and then spilled into Monday.

The police on Tuesday, however, confirmed two persons had been arrested in connection with the crisis.

Earlier, the fear of further attacks had led those living in the affected surrounding close to the old bridge by Timber shade and abattoir to abandon their homes in droves.

Kennedy Atu, a resident of North Bank, told our correspondent, that hoodlums have taken advantage of the situation to continue to loot people’s home and selling their belongings.

He said the crisis started as disagreement over a piece of land and was purely communal, adding that hoodlums had however used the opportunity to perpetuate theft.

“It’s communal crisis not cult related. Though cultists took advantage of what happened, however the crisis was rooted in communal disagreement. The community leaders need to be sincere about this so as to nib it in the bud. 

“I moved towards that direction when the crisis erupted on Easter Sunday and I saw things for myself. There was a gunshot; women and children were running toward every direction. As people ran away from their houses some groups of boys have gone there to steal their property, even today (Tuesday).

“There is calm now but security agencies drafted there hardly go to the spot of the crisis. People are still deserting the area as we speak while those stealing are carting away people’s machines to sell them. In village, we have problems and come to town, now there is still problem. Some of these women are food vendors who managed to build their houses from their business proceeds and the houses have been burnt while others are looted,” Atu said.

Earlier, Nura Umar, the commander of a local vigilante in North Bank, Operation Shara, said they buried the two people killed as a result of the crisis on Monday.

The Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) for Benúe Command, SP Catherine Anene, on Tuesday, confirmed the crisis in a text message to our correspondent in Makurdi.

Anene said, “The crisis is confirmed but we didn’t see any corpse rather we have three injured persons. It was a cult clash.”

 

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