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Army Declares ‘War’ Against Killer Herdsmen

This comes after about 24 people were killed in Okpokwu Local Government Area of Benue State in attacks by herdsmen

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The Nigerian Army has drawn a battle line against killer herdsmen, telling them to stop their evil act or “face decisive action by troops”.

In a stern statement regarding the trail of blood left by killer herdsmen across the middle-belt region and elsewhere, the army also warned that commanders who fail to act decisively would “face court martial”.

This comes after about 24 people were killed in Okpokwu Local Government Area of Benue State in attacks by herdsmen, who also launched fresh attacks on Plateau communities, killing more than 25 persons despite the ongoing operation “Cat Race”.

Army spokesman Brig.-Gen. Texas Chukwu said their attention had been drawn to the continued disturbing, senseless killings and wanton destruction of properties in the three states and “strongly warns the perpetrators of these crimes to desist forthwith”, The Nation writes.

“We would like to unequivocally reiterate that the Army Headquarters warns the arsonists and the killers to stop or face decisive action by troops,” he said.

“Our Rules of Engagement (ROE) are clear on arson and murder. Therefore, no such criminal acts would be allowed in any of the aforementioned states.

“The public is please reminded that when troops are called out for internal security operations, they are not to joke or persuade anyone.

“We have warned our commanders on the ground to take decisive actions or face court martial.”

Gunmen suspected to be Fulani militia invaded Daffo village in Bokkos Local Government of Plateau State, killing among others five members of Rev. Bitrus Ishaya’s family.

According to an eyewitness, Jerry Datim, said the total number of those killed was 25.

“I was part of the rescue team. Those killed are 25.

“Rev. Bitrus Ishaya, his entire family was completely wiped out during the attack, including Stephen Ishaya, Patrick Ishaya, John Monday. We buried the five bodies we recovered last Friday. With the assistance of Mobile policemen, we recovered seven more bodies. The total number of bodies we recovered at the weekend is 25 and they have been buried in two mass graves in Daffo.”

Meanwhile, Plateau State Governor Simon Lalong has promised not to rest until every life in the state is secured.

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