Wednesday, 24 April 2013


This baby will never know her mother. Her mother will never sing lullaby to her or rock her to sleep. Worse still, she will never suckle from her mother’s breast.
This is because just one week after her birth, suspected Fulani herdsmen invaded their community in Mbalaagh Council Ward of Makurdi Local Government Area of Benue State and murdered her mother, Felicia Asongo.
The baby, who looks so smallish for her age, was lucky to have been smuggled away from the crisis by her grandmother during the attack in which 27 people were allegedly killed. She is now being fed with baby milk under the watchful eyes of her aged grandmother.
For more than two weeks now, over 200 members of the Mbalaagh Community have been taking refuge in the North Bank area of Makurdi, with some of them sleeping under trees after the gruesome invasion.

The baby girl, who was yet to be given a name, was about three weeks old when the reporter visited the North Bank area of Makurdi where the Mbalaagh people were taking refuge. She slept peacefully in her grandmother’s arm, oblivious of what had befallen her mother.
Narrating the incident, Mama Margaret Asongo said the heavily armed Fulani invaders came into their village at about 6.30am that fateful Wednesday and started killing everyone in sight.
“When they got to our compound, I quickly carried my granddaughter and went into hiding. But my daughter-in-law could not run because she just had a baby that week. So, they killed her.
“I am not happy at all that my daughter-in law was killed. I have been thinking of how to take care of the five children that she left behind. She was a farmer before her gruesome murder in the hand of Fulani herdsmen.”
Also speaking, one of her sons, Abraham, said when they finally found Felicia’s corpse, they had to hurriedly bury her in the night for fear that the Fulani invaders would attack them again.
Asked if they had any problem with the Fulani herdsmen before the attack, Abraham alleged that the Fulanis’ cows destroyed their farms and in the process of chasing the cows away, the herdsmen attacked them.
“We only complained that their cows were destroying our farms and in the process of driving them away, the Fulani herdsmen came and attacked us. We did not have any problem with them before.”
The 37-year-old Abraham, who is also taking refuge in North Bank with his two wives and six children, said he had been living on charity since the incident, adding that he could no longer go to farm to cater for his family.

Culled - The Sun  

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