Nigeria: 43 Feared Killed As Cult Groups Clash in Edo

8 May 2015

There seems to be no end in sight to the killing spree in Edo State; arising from the three weeks old clash between rival cult groups which has claimed no fewer than 43 lives in the state.

Reports had it that trouble had started for the cultists clashed at a polling centre during the April 11, Assembly election in Benin City.

A member of Maphite confraternity was said to have been beaten to death in the ensuing fracas.

It was also gathered that the fracas afterwards spread to town as members of the Maphite had vowed to avenge the “assault on their member”.

The clash however took a worrisome dimension last Saturday after members of the Black Axe allegedly killed a member of Eiye confraternity over “unresolved disagreement”.

The violent clash between the groups (Eiye and Black Axe) last December and early January had claimed over 25 lives.

A source who hinted our correspondent on the development said: “I think those black axe struck at this time in other to attribute the killing to Maphite.

“But unfortunately, a member of Eiye who was around the scene identified some of them.

“And what you are witnessing now is threesome war. Therefore, you cannot also rule out possible retaliation,” he added.

At last count Wednesday night, no fewer than 43 persons have been reportedly killed in Benin City, the State capital alone.

It’s feared that the skirmishes, if not nipped in the bud by security operatives could spread to tertiary institutions and other towns in the State.

According to reports, two women are among the dead so far. The mothers were said to have been shot by gunmen suspected to be cultists around third east circular road and New Benin area in the metropolis.

One of the women was reportedly shot after he claimed not to know the whereabouts of his 25-year-old son when the gunmen came looking for him in her store.

As at the time of filling this report, the State police command were yet to make official statement on the killings.

On his part, the command’s spokesman, DSP, Stephen Onwuchei said he was yet to be furnished with the development.

“For now, I don’t want to isolate cases or give out information that is untrue,” he stated.

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