|A troubled community|
THIRTY houses and farm produce worth several millions of naira were at the weekend destroyed during a clash between angry youths of Mbayangeh and Mbashine communities of Ikpayongo in Gwer West Local Government Area of Benue State.
It was gathered that the feud was orchestrated over a piece of land which had been a source of disagreement between the two communities led to the burning down of over thirty houses including economic trees and farm produce valued at over N50 million.
“It is a known fact that the communities had been neck deep in a tussle over the ownership of the piece of land. So it came as a surprise when we learnt that the said disputed land had been given out by one of the contending parties to a lawmaker who wants to construct a school.
“That singular act sparked angry reaction from Mbashine community who in a bid to resist what was happening also provoked a counter reaction from their neighbours and rivals leading to the use of dangerous weapons in the ensuing fighting.
“The fighting lasted several hours before the police came to restore calm but as at last count over 30 houses had been burnt down, economic trees destroyed while farm produce were not also speared by the warring parties,” an eyewitness said.
The eyewitness noted that no life was lost to the crisis, but pointed out that many people were displaced with no source of livelihood, shelter or food.
When Nigerian Tribune contacted the deputy Police Public Relations officer, Mr Ejike Alarebe, his telephone was not through but an officer in the command, who pleaded anonymity, disclosed that the command had deployed its men to the troubled communities in order to ensure the restoration of peace in the area.