Fulani Herdsmen lay siege on Mosque, Kill 7 and Kidnap 10 others

by on May 15, 2017
Gunmen suspected to be Fu­lani herdsmen, on Satur­day invaded Etogi commu­nity in Mokwa Local Government Area of Niger State and killed 21 people. They also injured about 15 other villagers.
The attack came barely two months after armed herdsmen struck in Lefu community in Gurara Local Government Area where they killed seven people and kidnapped 10 others.
The latest attack was a reprisal by the herdsmen over a disagree­ment between some Fulani youths and members of Etoga communi­ty, which led to the death of a herd­er.
A close source in the commu­nity, said that the herdsmen were offered land by the communi­ty as their settlement, and to also farm on the agreement that cer­tain amount of money would be paid to the village head every year.
Trouble allegedly started when the herdsmen failed to re­mit the agreed amount this year and claimed that the affected land now belonged to them.
This, however, did not go down well with the youths in the community who went on ram­page which led to the death of the herder.
Irked by the death of one them, the herders allegedly called for support from their kinsmen elsewhere and launched the at­tack on the community mosque when Muslim faithful were ob­serving their prayers.
Malam Mairo Mohammed, who lost one of his brothers in the attack, said that the attackers, who had laid siege on the mosque, waited for the worshipers and killed everyone in the mosque, including the Imam.
Women and children who were woken by the commotion were said to have fled into different direction with about 15 of them sustaining injuries in the process.
The state Police Command Public Relations Officer, DSP Bala Elkana, who confirmed the attack, said that 20 people were killed when the villagers were about to observe their early morn­ing prayers.
He said that the attack was a reprisal to an earlier killing of a herder by the villagers. “The kill­ing of a herder was managed but it appears they were not satisfied and decided to retaliate,” Elkana stated.
According to him, a number of people who sustained various degrees of injuries during the at­tack, are recuperating in a near­by hospital.
He said: “The police have been deployed in the troubled com­munity while the Department of State Services (DSS) and officers of the command’s Criminal In­vestigation Department (CID) are on ground to maintain law and peace.”

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