Nigeria: Seven Dead in Makurdi Cult Clash: Community in Shock

Nigeria: Seven Dead in Makurdi Cult Clash: Community in Shock

By Ahmad Hadizat Omayoza, Mamos Nigeria

A tragic cult clash in the North Bank area of Makurdi town has left seven individuals dead, including a gruesome beheading. The altercation originated from a minor dispute between members of rival Red and Black cult groups, quickly escalating into a violent battle that engulfed the North Bank Market and its environs. 

An eyewitness, speaking on the condition of anonymity, shared that the fracas began when a member of one of the cult groups visited the North Bank Market near the Nigerian Army School of Military Engineering (NASME) to make a purchase. Upon encountering members of the rival gang, he was harassed, prompting him to return with reinforcements. This led to a full-scale confrontation that turned the marketplace into a battleground, causing traders to shutter their businesses and flee for safety.

The violence persisted into the next day, Saturday, as the rival gangs hunted down members of the opposing faction. Those captured were either hacked to death or shot on sight. The eyewitness confirmed that seven individuals had been fatally injured in the ongoing conflict.

Calm has only recently returned, with the intervention of military, police, DSS, NSCDC, and other security operatives who have taken measures to quell the violence and apprehend suspects. The Chairman of North Bank Market, Cibilus Odinaka, expressed dismay over the slow response of security personnel to the crisis, emphasizing the need for enhanced security measures to prevent further bloodshed.

Commander Nura Umar of Operation Shere, an anti-cult unit, reported that in addition to the seven fatalities, one victim had been brutally beheaded, and the severed head was taken by the perpetrators. Some of the deceased also had their hands severed, indicating the extreme violence that had transpired.

Umar explained that the clash primarily involved the Red and Black cults, with two casualties attributed to the Red cult and four to the Black cult. Additionally, a commercial motorcycle rider, who was not affiliated with any cult, was caught in the crossfire and lost his life.

The cult members also targeted a house near a school, which they destroyed after one of their own sought refuge there from pursuing rivals. The owners of the house were blamed for aiding the escape, resulting in the destruction of their property.

The Police Public Relations Officer, Catherine Anene, confirmed the incident and stated that investigations were ongoing. However, she did not provide specific details on the number of casualties.

This tragic event has sent shockwaves through the community, highlighting the urgent need for enhanced security measures to prevent further loss of life and property.

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