Gunmen Attack Kogi Communities, Kill APC Chairman, 23 Others,
**Policemen, Others receives injuries
An early morning attack on Tawari village in Kogi Local Government Area of Kogi state on Friday by unknown gunmen has left behind 23 persons dead.
Sources from Tawari village revealed that the attackers whom they alleged could be Fulani herdsmen, invaded the village at about 1.00 am on Friday, shooting sporadically, setting houses, and churches ablaze.
Also touched were the oldest clinic established by the Missionaries in the Colonial era and the official vehicle of the traditional ruler of the area, the Aguma of Tawari, Alhaji Idris Tawari among other numerous property.
It was also confirmed that the APC Chairman Tawari ward, Ibrahim Simbabi, and the Chief Imam of the village, Mallam Zakari Salihu were gruesomely murdered during the unexpected attack.
Several persons including some Policemen were reported to have sustained serious injuries and are presently receiving treatment at the Koton Karfe general hospital.
The Administrator of Kogi local government, Barr. Muhammed Tanko who visited the community to access the situatio, at the palace of the Aguma of Tawari, Alhaji Idris Tawaru described the killings as “wicked and heartless”.
The Administrator who was in company of the state Police Commissioner, said that unidentified gunmen suspected to be Fulani herdsmen attacked a Bassa Kwomu community in Tawari and killed over 20 young men aged between 20 and 40 years and above.
Tanko promised the residents that the council would work with relevant security agencies and volunteers to ensure that the perpetrators were arrested and prosecuted.
He directed the immediate evacuation of the survivors to General Hospital for proper medical care, pledging that the council would settle the medical bill.
He advised residents to report their problems to appropriate authority rather than taking the laws into their hands.
Also, Kogi State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Ede Ayuba, appealed to the families of the victims not to take to reprisal, assuring them that efforts were on to apprehend the killers.
Earlier, the Aguma of Tawari, HRH, Idris Tawari said the attack was allegedly perpetrated by some Fulani people, adding that the attack started at about 12 midnight in the early hour of today (Friday) leading to gruesome murder of over 20 young men.
The Security agencies in charge of Kogi LG, the Police, SARS, Nigeria Army and civilian joint task force, confirmed the incident and said that they have since commenced full investigation into the matter.
Residents who were lucky to survive the raid, recalled that a year ago there was a problem between the Bassas Kwomu and the Nomads in the area over trespass into farmland, but was said to have been settled on the condition that the farmers will not burn the bush to enable their cattle feed on the grass.
“Unfortunately, some farmers and hunters reneged on the agreement and started burning the bush. The herders protested, but the action did not go down well with farmers and that sparked physical combat that led to the death a young Fulani herdsmen.
“A truce was reached on condition that there will not be any reprisal or counter attack by both the farmers and herdsmen.”
The farmers were said to have suspected strange movements of the Nomads as they were seen moving out of the area unceremoniously few days ago. Some didn’t suspect any danger coming as they believe it is the usual nomadic life of migration in search of greener pastures.
With the Friday early morning attack, it downed on them to point accusing finger to the migrated Fulanis, calling on the security agencies and the government to fish out the killers.
However, the state governor, Yahaya Bello has giving a marching order to the security apparatus in the state to apprehend the killers.
Also, the House of Representative member for Kogi/LOKOJA Federal constituency, Barr. Ibrahim Saba has advocated for a permanent security post in the community to curtail further invasion.