Bloody new as violence, deaths recorded in Kaduna, Rivers, Kwara on January 1.
A traditional ruler, Dr. Gambo Makama, was killed alongside his pregnant wife in Sango local government area of Kaduna state on Monday, January 1, by gunmen who invaded his palace.
14 people were reportedly killed by gunmen in the Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni local government area of Rivers state on January 1, between 12.10am and 1.am.
At Least 20 People were reportedly killed in Benue State during an attack suspected to be from Fulani herdsmen.
Scores of people were reportedly injured during an attack on Christian and Muslim worship centers in Kwara state.
While others were celebrating the New Year and appreciating God for ushering them into 2018, there were tears of sorrow in the eyes of some people as assailants attacked some residents in Kaduna, Rivers and Kwara states. Arak village in the Sango local government area of Kaduna state was thrown into mourning at the break of the New Year as gunmen invaded the village and killed the paramount ruler, Etum Numana II, Dr. Gambo Makama and his pregnant wife, Punch reports.
REPORTINGINFO.COM gathered that the Monday attack was third in the series of attacks in southern Kaduna within a week. Punch reports that the first was in Nindem in Godogodo chiefdom, in the Jema’ah local government where a lone gunman attacked Christians observing the Christmas carol on December 23, 2017, killing four people and injuring eight others.
The monarch was said to have traveled from his place in Gwantu to celebrate the New Year with his subjects in Arak, his village, but was murdered around 12: 07 am. Some gunmen were said to have opened fire on the entire family, including the monarch’s 45-year old son. The monarch and his wife died on the spot, while his son sustained serious injuries and was rushed to the hospital.
Confirming the incident, the spokesman for the Kaduna state police command, ASP Mukhtar Aliyu, said: “We got a distress call about 4am that armed men stormed the monarch’s house and shot him and his wife. “The hoodlums also set his palace ablaze before fleeing. We are intensifying efforts to ensure that we arrest them.
The state governor, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai, on Monday condemned the attack and ordered that the culprits be brought to book. The governor, in a statement by his senior special assistant on media and publicity, Samuel Aruwan, said: “The late Etum Numana was a peacemaker. The government commiserates with the immediate family of the royal father and his wife, the people of Numana Chiefdom and the entire Sango local government area.
“The government has directed security agencies to investigate this criminal incident and bring the assailants to justice. “We urge the people of Numana Chiefdom to remain calm and to support the security agencies as they investigate this latest threat to the hard-won peace in the area.
” Meanwhile, It was gathered that 14 people were killed by gunmen who embarked on a shooting spree in Omoku, in the Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni local government area of Rivers state between 12.10am and 1.am. The victims were said to have gone to their various churches for crossover service and were ambushed on their way back. Other people also reportedly sustained gunshot injuries and were rushed to hospitals by other residents of the community.
A man and his wife and four members of a family were part of those killed in the attack. According to a resident of the area simply identified as Ukandu, the incident occurred at two places in the area – Omoku and Aligwu. He said, “We were shocked to see some corpses in Aligwu and Omoku. About 14 persons were killed; and some of them were shot at close range.” In Ilorin, Kwara state, youths from Taiwo Isale area allegedly attacked Christian and Muslim worship centres on Monday, January 1, leaving scores of people injured.
The Kwara state police public relations officer, Ajayi Okasanmi reportedly gave a conflicting figure on the number of those injured, by claiming that three people were injured. The special adviser on security to the Kwara state governor, Amusa Bello, said no fewer than 25 people were injured. Punch also reports that community leaders in the are had prevented the youths from organising what New Year carnival around 2.am for fear of the carnival turning into a security threat, owing to previous experiences.
The youths allegedly resorted to throwing bangers indiscriminately at all gatherings in the vicinity, including religious gatherings celebrating the New Year. Churches in the area and a Muslim group, called Quareeb, were attacked, and property belonging to the churches and the United Secondary School in Taiwo Isale were damaged.
The Kwara state governor, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed condemned the attack and called on security agencies to arrest the perpetrators and bring them to justice. Meanwhile, NAIJ.com previously reported that three people were reportedly killed by gunmen suspected to be hoodlums on Christmas eve. Five other persons were reported to have sustained severe gun injuries during the attack on Utonkon community of Ado local government area of Benue state.