Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
At least, six people have been feared killed, with many injured and several houses were burnt on Sunday in a renewed hostilities between Bonta community in Konshisha and Ukpute community in Oju Local Government Areas of Benue State.
Sources told newsmen that most members of the two warring communities had last week deserted their homes following renewed crisis bothering on issues of land.
It was learnt that trouble started in the affected border communities after a farmer from one of the villages went to farm on a disputed piece of land which had been deliberately left to fallow to forestall crisis between an Ukpute- Ainu, an Igede speaking community in Oju LGA and another Bonta village in Tiv speaking Konshisha LGA.
However, it was gathered that the move by the farmer did not go down well with oppossing villagers, a development which degenerated to verbal exchanges and then into exchange of gunfire in the affected communities.
Although, the matter was said to have been quickly brought under control following a peace meeting between the two communities, it was gathered that some aggrieved members of the communities instigated the latest crisis at the weekend.
Reacting, Traditional Head of Konshisha, Ter Kyor, Thomas Jam, on Monday, described the incident as unfortunate especially as it was happening again while elders of the two communities were trying to broker peace among the parties involved.
The Monarch who spoke by telephone to newsmen in Makurdi disclosed that he had already contacted the district head of the affected area and reported the matter to Tor Tiv who directed that the perpetrators of the crisis be fished out and made to fave the wrath of the law.
Also reacting, President of Igede National Youths Council, Comrade Andyson Egbodo, told newsmen that on the Oju side, six persons were killed and several houses burnt during the latest crisis.
When contacted, State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP Catherine Anene who confirmed fresh crisis the areas said that normalcy had returned to the communities as the police immediately brought the trouble under control.
The Police spokesperson however said that she was yet to be briefed about any loss of lives in the crisis.