By Daniel Agbo
Suspected herdsmen on Monday attacked and raped a mother of four, (name withheld) in Azege, Tse Ikyoifi in Logo local government area of Benue state.
The herdsmen also destroy crops and burnt several houses in the villages and displaced many others in the process.
Logo LGA chairman, Richard Nyajom who disclosed this yesterday to newsmen in Makurdi the Benue state capital, said many of the locals have deserted their houses in fear of further attack by the herdsmen.
The chairman said though nobody was killed in the Monday attack, the incident has raised the figures of those displaced to several thousands.
According to him, shortly before the law came into effect on 1st November, 2017, the herdsmen had moved out of the local government only to regroup in the neighbouring Awe LGA of Nasarawa state from where they have been launching attacks on settlers in the coastal areas.
He said it was during one of the attacks on the farming settlements in the area that they raped the woman on Monday, and burnt several houses in Azege and its environs.
The chairman said the woman has been hospitalised in an undisclosed health facility following the incident.
“Shortly before the implementation of the anti open grazing law, the herdsmen were attending meetings with us, but few days to implementation of the law they left only to regroup and return to the place and launch attack on the residents,” he added.
Meanwhile, the special assistant to Governor Samuel Ortom on herdsmen matters, Shehu Tambaya, said over 3,000 herdsmen had left the state since the law came into effect.
He also confirmed that those that left the state have done so of their own free will probably because they were not prepared to ranch their cattle.
Tambaya however stated that about a hundred herders have signified interest to ranch and the process of leasing land to them were ongoing.