No fewer than 29 people were allegedly killed by suspected Fulani herdsmen in Nkei-Dongwro near Miango in Bassa Local Government Area, Plateau State, yesterday.
A dusk-to-dawn curfew had earlier been imposed on Bassa following a series of attacks in the area. But the gunmen have been defying the curfew as the attacks usually take place in the night.
The National President of Irigwe Development Association and former member of the Plateau State House of Assembly, Sunday Abdu, confirmed that 29 people mainly women and children were killed by the gunmen.
According to Abdu, some men seen as soldiers took the victims to one classroom with a view to saving their lives as they had all abandoned their ancestral homes, but it turned out to be a disguise as the gunmen massacred them as soon as they were left vulnerable by their perceived protectors.
Abdu, who said the village was attacked before, expected that the place should have still have been under the watch of the soldiers.
The state government said it was a regrettable case of unprovoked gun attack which has characterised the vicious circle of violence in the Irigwe chiefdom of Bassa council.
Government’s reaction came through the Director of Press and Publicity to the governor, Mr. Emmanuel Samuel Nanle, in a statement.
The Senator representing Plateau North Senatorial District, Dr. Jonah David Jang, in a statement he personally signed, asked the government to reconsider another strategy as the curfew was not working. But he put the death toll at 23.
He said he received with a deep sense of sadness and outrage, the news of the incessant violent killings going on in Bassa Local Government, allegedly perpetrated by herdsmen who have become the usual suspects in that kind of coordinated attacks in the state, and others in the Middle-Belt.
“The attack on Tegbe Village, the failed attack on Nzoruvho Village on Saturday October 14th, 2017, and the most recent one on Nkiedonwhro Irigwe Chiefdom in the early hours of today October 16th, 2017 where about 23 persons were alleged to have been killed, are condemnable, no matter the justification”, he said.