Death toll in weekend’s massacre in Unguwar Galadima community in Zamfara State, yesterday, hit 200.
This came as governor of the state, Abdulaziz Yari, who visited the village, yesterday, broke down in tears on sighting corpses of women, children and other residents of the village littering every part of the village. Our correspondent said the governor and other officials participated in the burial of 79 people killed in the attack by the cattle rustlers.
A Zamfara community burnt down by the rampaging Fulani herdsmen.
A survivor of the weekend’s massacre, yesterday, confirmed counting 61 bodies even as the corpses were buried in mass graves.
This came as no fewer than 25 people, including politicians who were on their way to Maiduguri, the Borno State capital to attend the All Progressives Congress, APC, stakeholders meeting/congress were slaughtered by suspected Boko Haram terrorists in separate attacks in Gwoza council area and along the Maiduguri‑ Biu road.
A Nigerian soldier has also alleged that some military commanders were mercenaries of the Boko Haram sect and were paid by its sponsors. Military spokesman, Major General Chris Olukolade, however denied the allegation.
30 people killed —Police
On the Zamfara massacre, Police spokesman, Mr Lawal Abdullahi, said that “30 people were killed and several others injured” in the attack.
According to him, “the incident happened in Galadima during a meeting of community leaders and representatives of vigilante groups who were discussing ways to thwart armed robbers and cattle rustlers.
One of the survivors who simply gave his name as Babangida from neighbouring Kaduna, said more than 61 people died in the attack.
According to him, “we counted 61 bodies from the scene of the attack last night, while many people were wounded and I was lucky to escape.”
He implored the security forces to stem incessant attacks by Fulani rustlers on villages in the area.
Our reporter, however, said he counted up to 250 bodie that littered the community.
How the community was attacked
Vanguard gathered that the attackers were said to have obtained an intelligence report of a meeting being held in the community by vigilante teams and the community stakeholders on how to contain the invaders.
While the meeting was ongoing, they invaded the town on motorbikes with each bike carrying three men clutching guns and other dangerous weapons.
On arriving the town, the attackers started shooting at anyone in sight including women and children. Many victims were shot from behind.
Hundreds of bodies littered the town as those who could run escaped in to the bush. The gunmen also set a number of houses and shops ablaze.
After the attackers had left, members of the community embarked upon the unpleasant task of retrieving the bodies and burying them in mass graves.
The Emir of Dansadau, Alhaji Husaini Adamu, told our reporter: “This is not the first time the people of the area would be facing such problem but today’s attack was the worst of its kind in the history of killings in this area.”
The Emir, therefore, called on the authorities concerned to, as a matter of urgency, take immediate measures to address the problem.
Assistant Inspector‑General of Police (AIG) Zone 10, Mamman Sule also in his remarks warned the vigilante groups to desist from holding such meetings which he described as illegal.
He said the gunmen invaded the town because they perhaps got the information that the meeting was to find a way of attacking them.
Gov Yari visits, weeps
Zamfara State Governor Abdulaziz Yari, who visited Unguwar Galadima, yesterday, broke down in tears on sighting corpses of women, children and other residents of the village littering every part of the village.
The governor who was received by the Emir of Dansadau, Alhaji Hussaini Adamu, explained that they counted more than one hundred dead bodies on the sport and more are still been counting.