5 Killed, 50 Houses Razed As Communities Clash Over Cashew Nut Harvest In Kogi.
No fewer than five persons have been reportedly killed in a fresh communal clash between Igala and Bassa Kwomu speaking tribes in Kogi State.
It was gathered that over 50 houses were razed at Aloko-Oguma in Bassa Local Government Area following a communal clash that engulfed the community on Friday morning.
Sources has it that the crisis erupted following a dispute between the Bassa Kwomus and the Igalas over the harvest of a disputed cashew nuts.
It was learnt that the Igalas claimed the Bassa Kwomus in the ensuing fracas killed one of their members and buried secretly without a trace of the grave.
The situation, according to sources, angered the Igalas who were said to have allegedly mobilised themselves, killed five Bassa Kwomus and razed down over fifty houses belonging to the Bassa Kwomus.
Property worth millions of Naira belonging to the Bassa Kwomus were burnt in the fracas. As at last weekend, the entire community was deserted as fears of reprisal attacks by Bassa Kwomus was palpable.
Other sources reveal that there has been long time tribal rivalry between the Bassa Kwomus and the Igalas in the community and that the cashew harvest fracas was an opportunity for both tribes to unleash their anger on one another.
The Administrator of Bassa Local Government Area, Hon. Samuel Alumka and the House of Assembly member representing the Area, Hon. Sunday Shigaba visited the community at the heat of the crisis on Friday.
They all appealed to the warring factions to sheathe their swords and live in peace.
As at Saturday, armed soldiers and the policemen were promptly drafted to the community to avoid further clashes. The Bassa Kwomus whose houses were raised are currently rendered homeless.
Confirming the incident, the Kogi State Police Public Relation Officer ASP William Aya said the report that five people died in the communal clash was not true.
According to him, “only one person died in the clash. The deceased is an old woman. So the information that five persons died is out of place.”