Suspected Fulani herdsmen were reported to have attacked the residents of Gbeji, Tse Akaanya and Tse Hiityo last week Wednesday and Thursday, killing more than 50 people and destroyed properties worth millions of Naira.
The villagers have however accused the Nigerian Army of colluding and leading the Fulani militias to attack their villages.
Narrating their ordeal before the Commissioner for Industry, Trade and Investment, Prof. Tersoo Kpelai who took a team of journalists to the communities to asses the level of destruction and commiserate with the families, Mr. Sunday Kulegwa and Iortaver Idye (the most elderly person in Gbeji town) all pointed accusing fingers on the army noting that army personnel using official vehicles were not only spotted on the scene of the attacks with the invaders but also participated in the shooting and killing of innocent people.
Similarly, in Tse Akaanya and Tse Hiityo all in Lumbuv council ward, Hon. Timothy Iorfa, Councilor representing Lumbuv ward, Austin Damsa and Terkaa Agera who witnessed the attack maintained that, men of the Nigerian Army in their personnel carriers and other army utility vehicles mounted with launchers and other sophisticated weapons were seeing shooting and killing people why the Fulani militias followed the troops burning houses and carting away with other valuables.
Reacting, Commissioner for Industry, Trade and Investment, Prof. Tersoo Kpelai condoles the family of the deceased saying it is worrisome that innocent people are attacked and killed in their ancestral homes without any slightest provocation and promised to liaise with the appropriate authorities to investigate allegations of military involvement in the attacks.
Prof. Kpelai also assured the communities that he will meet with the Executive Secretary, Benue State Emergency Management Agency to discus the way forward and see if Government will come to the aide of the displaced.
Recall that the Benue State governor Samuel Ortom had earlier told the residents of the state to defend themselves with stones and sticks against attack from the suspected Fulani herdsmen.