By Godwin Edeh and Moses Mbaiorga
Emerging facts have revealed that the attack on Katsina-Ala Central Police Station was a suspected rescue mission by one of the bandits’ allies, who were detained earlier in connection with the reoccurring unrest in the area.
The Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Benue State Police Command, ASP Catherine Anene, who confirmed the attack in a press release, however, said the bandits did not succeed with the attack as 14 of them were gunned down, while many escaped with gunshot wounds after they engaged in a gun duel with police officers.
The Voice investigation further revealed that none of the police officers were wounded nor taken away during the attack just as those in detention were not carted away.
According to one of the locals in Katsina-Ala town who preferred anonymity, there is a local security architecture called ‘Ashe a Ityô’ (Eyes of the People) operating in that axis and set up by members of the community in Katsina-Ala local government to help bring down the current insecurity in the area to its knees. The body was to be supervised by Katsina-Ala council, led by Mr Orya Atela
One of the prominent groups in Katsina-Ala local government known as Shitile Council of Elders and its traditional rulers alike were reported to have blessed their seemingly brave children and charged them not to relent in the task of securing peace in the land. They were also advised to discharge their duty without fear or favour to revive the lost peace in the area.
Meanwhile, during a political event held last week in Katsina-Ala town where Mr Jonathan Agbidye, Member Benue State House of Assembly under the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) was hosted, Ashe a Ityô was reported to have invaded the event and arrested one of the elders of the party (name withheld) who has been on their watch list and immediatly handed him over to the police for further interrogation.
According to reports, the action did not go down well with other members of the APC in the area calling ‘Ashe a Ityo’ a PDP organised security formation working against their opponents.
As deliberations over the aforementioned issue was going on, gunmen suspected to be allies of the elder who was arrested by the Ashe a Ityô and taken to the police station were alleged to have attacked the police station where the elder was cooling for further interrogation.