Kogi Herdsmen attack: Death toll rises, houses burnt, many displaced

Kogi Herdsmen attack: Death toll rises, houses burnt, many displaced
Bayo Oyewale,Lokoja
As the Fulani Herdsmen attacks continued in Kogi communities , more people May have lost their lives while many people are still missing in the latest attack on the people of Oganenigwu in Dekina local government area of the state.
It was reliably gathered on Friday that the latest attack was toward Abejukolo and Agbenema communities as the people are presently locating massively to the neighbouring areas such as Anyigba, Egume and other areas for their safety.
Source hinted that the death toll in Oganenigwu from the invasion by the fulani herdsmen on Wednesday was so heavy at both side that the number quoted earlier was a child play.
It was learnt that over 200 people have been displaced as they were said to have relocated to nearby communities for safety.
Source added that over 50 houses were burnt down by the suspected Fulani herdsmen while people living in nearby villages around Oganenigwu have deserted the homes as they move in droves to places like Anyigba, Ologba, Etulutekpe, Iyale and others.
“As at now no body can say the actual number of dead people, because many families are yet to see their relatives,” the source said.
It was also disclosed that the presence of the security agents drafted to the trouble areas could not be felt as situatio was yet to to be brought under control.
An eye witness, Mr. Ojodale Philip who is the principal of Community secondary school Oganenigwu Kogi state disclosed that “my school was under attack by Fulani terrorist at about 8:30 am,stressing to God be the glory no life was lost in that School, but many people were massacred in the village.
“I personally was shot several times but nothing happened to me. In my hands are some of the bullets that where meant to kill me” .
However, the Kogi State governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello who was expected to visit the trouble communities on Friday could not make it due to circumstances beyond his control.
 Governor Yahaya Bello has expressed shock on the attack carried out on the people of Oganenigwu and nearby communities in the Eastern Senatorial Zone of Kogi State by armed bandits suspected to be herdsmen.
This was contained in a press statement issued on Friday by the Director General Media and Publicity to the governor, Mr. Kingsly Fanwo copy of which was made available to newsmen in Lokoja
“The Kogi State Government ensured that the military, the police and other relevant security agencies, including members of the Kogi State Vigilante Services were immediately mobilised to the affected areas following the initial reports.
“The violence has since been contained and brought under control.
“The incident however remains under investigation while efforts are ongoing to apprehend the attackers and bring them to justice.
“His Excellency, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, the Executive Governor of Kogi State will conduct on the spot assessment of the distressed communities today. He will meet with Security Chiefs and community leaders after which more information will be forthcoming based on available facts.
“The Governor believes nothing compares to the sanctity of the human life and that must be protected by all who believes in humanity.
Meanwhile, the Kogi State Chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)has blamed the killing of over 32 persons in Dekina and Omala local government councils of the State on Governor Yahaya Bello.
The PDP lamented the governors open invitation to the rampaging herdsmen and the setting up of cattle colonies without adequate security measures put in place, has necessitated the killings.
In a statement signed and Issued yesterday by Achadu Dickson, Director Research and Documentation, said the governor should explain his role in the killing following his invitation of the herdsmen and approval of 15,000 hectares of land in Ajaokuta and Adavi for the establishment of cattle colony, amidst discontent by the people.
The PDP also condemned in strong terms the gruesome murder of Innocent citizens by the herders, said their action has vindicated the party’s position from the onset that Gov Bello’s action of establishing cattle colonies was an invitation to anarchy.
While the party commiserate with the families who lost their loved ones, the PDP call for a further arrest of the crisis by the security agencies as it is one death too many in the country as it will do one any good.
The PDP called on the governor to renounce his action of setting up colonies in the state, make a public apology of his action, and adequately compensate those who lost lives and properties.
The party described the times under governor Bello, as hell on earth for Kogi people, despite his inability to pay salaries and after inflicting so much hardship on the people, his policy to set up cattle colonies has once again added more pains on the people.