Not less than nine persons were reported killed and many others wounded, with several houses razed when unknown gunmen in the early hours of yesterday attacked Tse-Ujoh in Ikyurav Tiev, Katsina-Ala local Council of Benue State.

The Guardian learnt from the locals, who escaped the attack, that the gunmen, who stormed the settlement in their numbers around 8am yesterday, appear to be gang members of a wanted notorious criminal, Terwase Akwaza, popularly known as Gana.

It was also gathered that the notorious criminal had a misunderstanding with a man, popularly known as ‘Coach,’ who the locals alleged was his rival.One of the locals, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said two persons were abducted by the attackers, while three others were missing.

The state Police Command Public Relations Officer, Moses Yamu, confirmed that nine persons were killed from the attack, adding that eight bodies were discovered on the spot, while one died on the way to the hospital. He said policemen have already been dispatched to the area to restore law and order.

Meanwhile, Governor Samuel Ortom, while expressing disgust over the killing, urged communities in Sankera area of the state to assist security operatives with useful information to end the attacks on innocent people by armed militia.

The governor described as unacceptable, the latest attack on Tse-Ujoh in the early hours of Friday, saying troops have already been deployed to the affected area to bring the situation under control and assured the people of Katsina-Ala that steps have been taken to prevent further attacks in the area.

Ortom said, so far, three persons have been arrested in connection with the attack, reassuring the people of the state that his administration would not allow armed militia to continue to terrorise communities.He encouraged anyone with information that could lead to the arrest of the gang members to contact the Police, Department of State Service or the military.

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