Tuesday, May 16, 2017 5:46 pm
Death toll in the attack at Epogi community in the Mokwa Local Government Area of Niger has risen to 27, according to the Niger State Emergency Management Agency (NSEMA).
The Director-General of the agency, Mr Ibrahim Inga, told reporters on Tuesday in Minna that 21 people were killed during the attack, while three bodies were recovered from a river.
Inga said that three other victims died at the Federal Medical Centre, Bida, bringing the total number of deaths to 27.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that 21 people were killed on May 14 when gunmen suspected to be herdsmen invaded the community.
Inga said that the gunmen stormed the community at about 6 a.m. when Muslims were observing their morning prayers in a mosque and killed 21 on the spot.
He said explained that there was an argument between one Alhaji Yakubu Yuguda, a herdsman who came to settle on a portion of land in the community and members of the community in 2016.
Inga said further that in the ensuing argument, a boy was killed and the matter was reported to the police, leading to the arrest of Yuguda, who was later released.
He said that after the incident, the community enjoyed relative peace until May 14, when the village was attacked.
The director-general disclosed that the state’s Deputy Governor, Mr Ahmed Ketso, had visited the community and condoled with the victims.
He said that assessment had been carried out by SEMA to provide relief materials to victims, adding that normalcy had returned to the community.
Inga called on members of the community to return to their homes as security operatives had been deployed to the area.