At least 31 persons have been killed with several other injured in communal clashes between Egbura and Bassa communities, both in Toto Local Government Area of Nasarawa State in Northern Nigeria.
Locals say the clashes have been going on for over two weeks.
In a media briefing in the Nasarawa state capital, Lafia, National Secretary of Bassa Cultural and Development Union, BCDU, Watana Dogwo, alleged that thugs from Egbura community unleashed mayhem on Bassa community dressed in military uniforms.
According to Dogwo, “there are clandestine moves by the Egbura and their leaders to attach religion to the ongoing crisis.”
His words: “It is incumbent on us as the overall body of Bassa nation to tell the world about the reign of terror and massacre unleashed on the Bassa people in the on-going war in Toto Local Government Area of Nasarawa State, which government and all other relevant bodies have strangely remained mute.
“It is over two weeks now since the crisis in Toto began and the Bassa people have been consistently attacked by the Egbura hired mercenaries, who parade themselves in military uniforms.
“These mercenaries are often mistaken as military men by our people who, as it were, ought to provide security but are used by Egbura militia to wreak havoc on the Bassa,” Dogwo said.
The BCDU also condemned the attacks on Bassa and called for lasting peace in the Toto Local Government.