Troops of the joint military operation, Operation Whirl Stroke (OPWS), have repelled an attack launched by suspected Fulani herdsmen on three villages in Guma Council of Benue State.
The Guardian gathered from locals that the attackers had invaded three villages, including Tse-Torkula, Kponko and Kaseyo all in Mbadwem of Guma Council at the weekend.
The Fulani invaders reportedly stormed the villages and started shooting sporadically, killing people and injuring others in the process.
Although some of the informants in the area put fatality figures at 12, another local, Philip Tersoo, said one person died during the attack while two others were injured but later died at the hospital bringing the total number of death to three.
“As soon as troops of the OPWS heard about the attack, they swiftly went on the trail of the invaders and sighted them far in the bush.
“In fact, there was a fierce exchange of gunfire between the troops and the armed herdsmen during which five of the herdsmen were killed with no casualty on the side of the troops,” Tersoo added.
The troops were also said to have recovered three weapons from the attackers.
But the Force Commander of OPWS, Maj-Gen. Adeyemi Yekini, declined comment on the attack and referred newsmen to the Defence Headquarters (DHQ) Information Directorate.
However, Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Benue Command, DSP Catherine Anene, confirmed the attack but said the command was yet to ascertain the number of casualties.
She added that the intervention of joint military task force averted further attack in the affected areas.