Suspected herdsmen have reportedly killed 15 people in an early morning attack on a Catholic Church in Benue state, on Tuesday, April 24.
The attack occurred in Ayar-Mbalom, a community in Gwer East local government area.
Terver Akase, a spokesperson to Governor Samuel Ortom, told Premium Times that the attackers also burnt 50 houses and sacked the entire community.
NAIJ.com gathered that the name of the church is St. Ignatius’ Catholic Church.
Confirming the attack, the Catholic Diocese of Makurdi said two of its priests, Rev Fathers Joseph Gor and Felix Tyolaha, were killed.
A statement by its Director of Communications, Rev Fr Moses Iorapuu, said that the attack was perpetrated by herdsmen who stormed the Mbalom community and killed the two priests during the morning mass at the church.
The Diocese expressed regret at the nonchalant attitude of the security agencies in containing the killings.
The church, therefore, urged the relevant authorities to stop the killings in the Benue valley.
The attack comes barely four days after the murder of 10 persons by herdsmen in Guma local government area, which has been one of the major scenes of carnage by suspects herdsmen since January 1.
PAY ATTENTION: Read the news on Nigeria’s #1 news app
NAIJ.com previously reported that the Nigerian Army said the reported invasion of soldiers into a community in Benue occurred after a soldier was killed by residents.
Some soldiers reportedly invaded the community in a reprisal attack and set fire to houses and properties.
Francis Ayagah, chairman of the local government, admitted that a soldier was killed in the community on Wednesday, April 18, but said he had been in touch with the commander of the troops, who were stationed near the town.
Nigerian herdsmen vs Nigerian farmers - on NAIJ.com TV