Unknown gunmen suspected to be Fulani herdsmen attacked the community mosque in Etogi community, Gbara ward of Mokwa local government, Niger state.
We learnt that the attack occurred in the early hours of Sunday, May 14, while the villagers were observing their early morning prayers.
According to a report by The Nation, the attack was as a result of an earlier disagreement between some Fulani youths and members of the affected community which resulted in the death of a herder.
The disagreement reportedly started when a Fulani herder failed to keep his end of a bargain by remitting the percentage of the proceed of the land given to them by the villagers which was meant to be paid to the village head. The herders rather turned around to insist the land belong to them.
The gunmen killed everyone in the mosque including the Imam, according to a witness account. The Niger State police command confirm that the attack was a reprisal of the disagreement that led to a Fulani herder’s death.
The State Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Bala Elkana who said 21 people were killed explained that the killing of a herder was managed,” but it appears they were not satisfied and decided to retaliate.”
According to him, eight people who sustained various degrees of injuries due to the commotion that occurred during the attack are currently recuperating in a nearby hospital.
Elkana also said peace has been restored to the community as mobile policemen have been deployed to ensure that there is no more trouble from any of the affected parties.