Armed bandits numbering over 200 went haywire across Niger Communities killing well over 60 vigilance members, five villagers in Tungan Magajiya in Rijau Local Government Area and Paikpa village in Munya Local Government Area of Niger State. The two separate attacks occurred on Sunday and Monday nights.
In a similar incident around PaikpavillageinMunyaLocalGovernment Area, gunmen killed no fewer than five villagers while a number of others were seriously injured in a midnight raid. Our Correspondent gathered that, the 60 local vigilance members were killed at Sakaba, a border village between NigerandKebbistates on Sunday night at about 9.00pm in an ambush.
The vigilances are from Sakaba in Kebbi State and their counter parts from Tungan Magajia and Rijau in Niger State who were on a Jointpatrolalongtheareaduetothe incessant gunmen attacks on communities from the two states.
According to a source close to Rijau, the vigilances were on the trail of the gunmen said to be numbering over 200 after receiving information abouttheirmovement, unknownto them(vigilances) thataninformant had alerted the gunmen that they were being trailed by the vigilance. The gunmen immediately divided themselves into two with one group laying ambush while others advanced.
The vigilances, unaware of the ambush, found themselves at the center of the gunmen who opened fire on them from back and front. It was further gathered that those vigilance members who gun could not penetrate, were hacked down with machetes and other dangerous weapons.
Twelve of the victims were from Rijau while the remaining 48 are from Sakaba and Tungan Magajiya. In Paikpa village, unspecified number of cattle were rustled from the people by the rampaging gunmen, whom eyewitnesses said stormed the community at about 11:00pm, riding on motorcycles with each of them carrying AK47 rifles and other dangerous weapons.
The gunmen were said to have entered the village through Luwi community making the villagers to run in different directions after which the gunmen raided Njita and Chibani where they kidnapped many peopleand rustled cattlebefore making their way to Paikpa village.
According to a source close to Chibani village, “the gunmen operated for several hours searching all thehousesinthevillage. Afterhours of raid, the bandits escaped into the Chikun forest in Kaduna State.
Also, in Chukuba community in Shiroro Local Government, four teenagerswererapedsimultaneously by gunmen on Sunday morning when the left IDP camp in Zumba to go and get some food stuff from the farm.
A source told our Correspondent that, they (females) were said tohaveranintothegunmenontheir way back from the farm and were stopped and dragged to the bush where they were raped by those interested among the gunmen. After the rape, they had all their food stuff confiscated by the gunmen before they were allowed to go in tears.