A total of 25 persons have been confirmed killed in Agbaduma-Okololo village of Agatu local government area in Benue state, following the Sunday attack on the rural dwellers allegedly by neighbouring Abugbe community.
Daily Trust reports that both communities had signed a peace pact a day before the unfortunate incident.
The state’s deputy governor, Engr. Benson Abounu, who visited the area on Monday to assess the situation, expressed sadness over the killings, describing the act as, “unacceptable and unbecoming.”
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Abounu regretted that the lingering crisis between the communities in the affected areas over a piece of land and fishing pond had continued in spite of his several visits, amounting to eight times all in a bid to settle the dispute.
The deputy governor blamed the youths of Agatu, saying that they no longer respect their elders or traditional rulers.
He warned that henceforth, the perpetrators would be dealt with while crisis issue in the area shall no longer be put into the hands of traditional rulers and community elders but handled by security men for better results.
“It is no longer business as usual for killers and evil-doers in Agatu. Henceforth, anyone who kills shall be killed too, according to the law. No one among the killers shall get away with it this time around,” Abounu said.
The deputy governor therefore, announced a daily curfew between 6pm and 6am within Obagaji, Egba, down to Okokolo and Abugbe axis till further notice.
He stressed that anyone moving on the street during the curfew hours shall have his or herself to be blamed.
Earlier, the community leader and Chairman of Elite Forum Okokolo, Peter Entonu, said he narrowly escaped death that fateful day when the attackers came while they were in their various places of worship.
Entonu presented a list containing 25 names of those who were killed in the attack to the deputy governor.