11th October, 2010
At least three persons were feared deadÂ and several others injured yesterday when twoÂ Â factions of the Peopleâ€™s Democratic Party, PDP, clashed in Katsina-Ala Local GovernmentÂ Area of Benue State.
Trouble started when supporters of Mr. Solomon Wombo, Special Adviser on Local GovernmentÂ and Chieftaincy Affairs to Governor Gabriel Suswam and those of Mrs. Hembadoon Amena, aÂ female member of the Benue State House of Assembly, clashed at a campaign venue inÂ Tongov, leaving one person dead.
The fighting between supporters of the two camps was said to have continued in Tongov,Â which later led to the death of two more youths.
The State Commissioner of Police , Alhaji Ibrahim Mohammed , while confirming theÂ incident, denied that people died during the clash.
He said the command has quelled the clash, promising that the police will fished outÂ those who spearheaded the crisis that has rendered many homeless and properties worthÂ millions of naira destroyed.
â€œI can tell you that there was a clash in Katsina-Ala Local Government but I am waitingÂ for the Divisional Police Officer of Katsina-Ala to provide details of the conflict andÂ those involved. After I have received the details, I will brief the media accordingly onÂ the full actions to be taken,â€ he said.
Mohammed, who expressed his anger at the attitude of politicians in the state who overÂ heat the polity, warned that the police will not tolerate this as those found wantingÂ would be prosecuted.
Already , the Benue State Police Command has detained Mr. Ihom Wua, councillorÂ representing Tongov ward and deputy leader of Katsina-Ala Legislative council alongsideÂ five other PDP leaders from Tongov ward.
When contacted, the Chairman of Katsina-Ala Local Council, Mr Austin Avaan, who is alsoÂ the state Chairman of ALGON, told P.M.NEWS that he was yet to visit the trouble spot butÂ has heard of the fighting between PDP factions in Tongov ward. He said he would treatÂ news about the fighting as unconfirmed report until he gets a report from the councilÂ secretary and Katsina-Ala Divisional Police Officer, whom he has detailed to conductÂ on-the-spot assessment of the conflict.
Efforts to get the reactions of Mr Solomon Wombo, Adviser to Governor Suswam and MrsÂ Hembadoon Amena, member representing Katsina Ala West Constituency, proved abortive asÂ they both refused to pick their calls.
â€” Ubong George/Markurdi