Eight persons have been allegedly killed and several injured in coordinated attacks by rampaging armed bandits in over ten villages in Lavun Local Government Area of Niger State.
The affected villages include Egbako, Ndaruka, Ebbo, Ndagbegi, Tshogi, Gogata and Ndakogitu.
Others are Satisu, Yekoko, Satifu and Sokiara communities in the council.
The bandits, numbering about 100, stormed the villages on Saturday at 4 pm and are still operating today, Sunday.
It was gathered that they ransacked each community and unleashed havoc on the residents and rustled an unconfirmed number of cattle.
A source from one of the affected villages stated that the bandits killed one person each at Ebbo, Tsonfadagabi, Tsogi and Kanko communities.
The source also revealed that at Gbacitagi community, the bandits stormed the venue of a wedding ceremony and abducted the bride as well as one other girl.
According to him, the gunmen destroyed vehicles of well-wishers and other properties as well as carted away all monies realized at the wedding ceremony and rustled a number of cattle belonging to the villagers.
However, while heading out of Gbacitigi community towards Akere community in Wushishi Local Government Area with the rustled animals, it was gathered that they got stranded as the only bridge connecting the village with Akere had collapsed.
The gunmen’s move to force the animals into the river failed, prompting them to abandon them and turn back and attack Satisu, Yekoko, Satifu and Sokiara.
A source in Yekoko told our correspondent that the rampaging bandits were heading to Batati community.
According to him,” Presently, the residents of Batati have fled their homes for fear of being attacked. We are calling on the government to come to our aid, we don’t have what to face them (bandits) with. Nobody is in that village now.”
Confirming the incident, the Executive Chairman, Lavun Local Government Council, Hon Alh Ibrahim Limanko Pata described the act as insane and unacceptable, adding that the gunmen stormed the area at about 4 pm on Saturday.
The council chairman in a press statement signed by his media aide, Abu Shema Kutigi, stated that decisive actions would be taken by the government to guarantee the lives of the inhabitants of the vulnerable communities.
When contacted, the state Commissioner for Local Government and Internal Security, Emmanuel Bagna Umar, confirmed the incident but stated that he is yet to receive full details.
Efforts to get the reaction of the state police command through the Public Relations Officer, PRO, DSP Wasiu Abiodun failed at the time of filing this report.