UPDATE: Gunmen seize Alakyo village, burn Ombatse shrine in Nasarawa

FILE PHOTO

Gunmen on Sunday morning attacked Alakyo village in Nasarawa State, chased away the residents and burnt down the shrine of Lega Agu, also known as Baba Alakyo, the spiritual leader of the Ombatse militia group.

Alakyo is the village were over 89 Nigerian security operatives were killed last year by the Ombatse militia group.

The whereabouts of Baba Alakyo is not yet known as scores of people vacated the area.

The Nasarawa State Head of Service, Dominic Bako, was hit in his arm by a bullet as he ran into protesting youth in Shabu area, the adjourning village to Alakyo. He is currently receiving treatment at the state specialist hospital.

The students of the state polytechnic and college of agriculture in Lafia, which is a few meters away from Shabu, also fled the school for safety reasons.

By Sunday evening, Shabu had become partially shutdown as residents remained indoors and commercial activities grounded.

Four people were reportedly killed and their remains deposited at the Specialist Hospital Lafia, along Shendam Road, although state or hospital officials are yet to confirm that.

Scores of children and women were seen in the early hours of Sunday trekking to Nasarawa Eggon, about 30 kilometres from Lafia.

As news filtered in Lafia that some Eggon youth, who appeared to the protesting the attack on Alakyo, a predominantly Eggon enclave, were firing gunshots and heading to the residence of the Emir of Lafia, Ishah Agwai, the youth in Lafia went into the streets, threatening to burn down property belonging to Eggon people.

Security operatives were seen parading the streets of Lafia, dispersing protesting youth to avoid violence in the capital.

When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer, Ogwochukwu Theodore, confirmed the incident and said that police officers have been drafted to bring the situation in Alakyo and other places under control. He, however, declined commenting on the casualty figure and whether arrests were made.

Nasarawa, like neighbouring Plateau and Benue states, has witnessed several ethno-religious clashes leading to the death of hundreds of people.


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