In a style that brought back Odi massacre of November 20, 1999, under
the watch of President Olusegun Obasanjo, Nigerian soldiers reenacted
the same scenario, Monday, when they sacked six villages in the Agatu
Local Government Area of Benue State, and in the process killed six
persons, including a pregnant woman.
The sack followed the killing of a soldier at the weekend by some youths in the area.
Sources from Agatu explained that six villages, which include
Olegadakolo, Ikpele, Otugologwu, Iwali, Okpanchenyi and Egbs, were
sacked by the soldiers.
At Egba community, sources said a pregnant woman was hit by a stray bullet, adding that the six villages had been deserted.
“This is genocide on our people, as I am talking to you now, six
villages have been sacked, children and women have moved out of the
affected villages, while many people have been arrested by the invading
soldiers,” a resident of one of the villages, who pleaded anonymity
The council’s sole administrator, Mike Inalegwu, denied the killing of
people in Agatu communities but admitted the invasion of military
“There is no iota of truth in that, no one was killed, the military were
only on the mission to recover their arms and ammunition,” he said.
Brigade Commander of the 707 Special Force, Brig. Gen Clement Apere, denied that soldiers attacked the people.
“The operation we conducted in the area was carried out in a professional way,” he said.
Apere said only one person was arrested.
Over 1,000 people were killed in March last year when herdsmen invaded
Agatu communities. That attack left many homeless as their homes were
set ablaze by the rampaging herdsmen.
They are yet to recover from the herdsmen attack.