By Fabian Ekeruche
The Turan Development Association (TUDA) has appealed to the Federal Government to stop the incessant attacks on Kwande Local Government Area in Benue State by suspected terrorists.
Mr Festus lorkyaa, President, Turan Development Association (TUDA), made the appeal on behalf of the association, in a statement made available to newsmen on Saturday in Lagos.
Lorkyaa said that Kwande community had sustained terror attacks in the last week in February, where over 50 persons died, several people sustained injuries and property worth millions of naira destroyed.
“We write to report recent, sustained terror attacks on our communities over the past 10 days which have resulted in over 50 people dead, several injured, thousands displaced and loss of property and farmlands.
“These latest spate of attacks started on the 23rd of February in Ityurugh, Mbaikyor Ward in Turan, Kwande Local Government Area.
“These attacks have since spread to Abande, lyon, Kendev-Ya, Anwase, Yaaiwa, and other localities – an area spanning over 100km,²” lorkyaa said.
The president, alluding to reports by eyewitnesses, said that the attackers came in with cattle, numbering over 300 and were armed with highly sophisticated weapons.
He alleged that the attackers terrorized the people of the area, killing unarmed civilians, women and children while destroying homes, food stores and farmlands.
“In some cases, they have taken over the lands and settled on the land,” lorkyaa quoted the eyewitnesses as saying.
The association called on President Mohammadu Buhari to use his good office to speedily secure the Kwande people, their farmlands and their property.
They prayed the president to arrest and prosecute the suspected terrorists; and to ensure that a thorough investigation was carried out to fish out the masterminds of the attacks.
The association also wants the FG to arrest and prosecute those funding and planning the attacks.
In addition, the association prayed the FG to strengthen security for the affected communities.
They also urged the FG to provide urgent humanitarian support to displaced persons from the affected communities who have now taken refuge in neighboring communities.