Seven killed as rival cult groups clash in Benue

Seven killed as rival cult groups clash in Benue

Seven people were reportedly killed in a rival cult clash that rocked North Bank, a suburb of Makurdi, Benue State.


The clash which started on Saturday, February 24, 2024, forced the market located around the area to close down. 


An eyewitness, who spoke to newsmen on Monday, said the clash was between Black Axe and Red Axe cult groups.


The chairman of North Bank market, Cibilus Odinaka, narrated how the crisis started, stating that one of the rivals came to the market to access some product and the other people saw him and harassed him. 


“He went back and told his friends and they came back to fight. That was how the whole issue started. Between that Saturday and today (Monday), six persons have been killed,” Odinaka explained. 


According to punch, the Nigerian Army School of Military Engineering and Nigerian Army 72 Barracks are located in North Bank, close to the scene but this did not stop the cultists.


“The issue of barracks as far as we are concerned, is completely useless. In fact, we do not have any military barracks within North Bank. Even the C Division, we don’t have anyone. Their response are usually very very low,” Odinaka added.


A leader of vigilance group in the area, Nura Umah, who spoke to journalists on Monday said that six cult members lost their lives during the clash. 


“Six cult members were killed during the clash, two from Red Axe and four others from Black Axe. Even the cultists went away with the head of one of the victims. Unfortunately, one okada man ran into the clash and was killed,” Umah said. 


He added that security operatives have been deployed to the area.


Spokesperson of the State Police Command, Catherine Anene, who confirmed the incident said that officers have been deployed to the troubled area.


“Report of cult activities in North Bank were reported and the command deployed police officers to take charge. Investigation is ongoing. I have no report of number of victims,” she said. 

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