Five Killed, 50 Houses Burnt in Kogi Communal Clash

At least five people were killed and 50 houses set ablaze in a communal clash between Igala and Bassa Kwomu at Aloko-Oguma in Bassa local government area of Kogi state.

The fracas, which started on Friday was said to have to extend to Saturday as people from the two tribes attacked themselves.

Sources have it that the crisis erupted following a dispute between the Bassa Kwomus and the Igalas over the harvest of a disputed cashew nuts farm.

It was gathered that the crisis had started as the clash between some individuals over the ownership of the cashew farm but later escalated to a communal crisis on Friday leading to the killing of people from both sides.

Sources said on Sunday that the Igalas had alleged that people of Bassa Kwomu in the ensuing fracas killed one of their members and gave the person a secret burial without a trace of the grave.

The situation angered the Igalas who were said to have allegedly mobilized themselves killed five Bassa Kwomus and razed down over 50 houses belonging to the Bassa Kwomus.

It was also learnt that there has been a long time tribal rivalry and pent-up anger between the Bassa Kwomus and the Igalas in the community, with cashew harvest fracas being an opportunity to unleash their anger on one another.

Confirming the incident, the member representing Bassa state constituency in the Kogi state house of assembly, Hon Sunday Shigaba, said some individuals had been having issues among themselves over cashew before the crisis escalated.

He said people were killed and houses burnt in the violence the engulfed the community.

Shigaba regretted that the violence erupted in the community and led to the loss of lives and destruction of properties of innocent people.

He said he had visited the community along with the administrator of the local government area, Samuel Alumka, to commiserate with the people.

They appealed to the warring factions to sheath their swords and live in peace.

It was however gathered that men of the Nigerian Army and that of the police have been drafted into the community to maintain peace.

The Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Kogi state police command, William Aya, confirmed the incident but said only one person was feared dead.




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