A former Peoples Democratic Party Chairman in Benue State, Lawrence Ugbo, and seven others have been killed following a rift between two brothers.
It was learnt that the incident happened at Ondo Ugboju in the Otukpo Local Government Area of Benue State in the early hours of Thursday.
According to a source, the ex-PDP chieftain was killed and his body dumped in his car, which was then set ablaze.
Trouble, according to the source, started when some loyalists of one Benjamin Ijachi, a member of the PDP, attacked a group loyal to Udenyi Ijachi, a member of the All Progressives Congress, and a former caretaker chairman of Otukpo Local Government Area on Wednesday.
The attack was said to have left many people injured.
As a result of that, Udenyi, popularly known as Kpem, was said to have in the early hours of Thursday mobilised his loyalists and launched a reprisal on the community, shooting at anybody on sight.
At the end of the day, eight persons were reported dead, including the ex-Bayelsa PDP Chairman, Ugbo.
When contacted, the state police spokesman, ASP Moses Yamu, confirmed the incident but said only four persons were killed while four persons were injured.
The police spokesman, who attributed the incident to the persistent crisis between the two Ijachi brothers, said one of them, Benjamin, was already in police custody, while his sibling, Udenyi, had yet to be apprehended.
The Chairman of Otukpo Local Government Area, George Alli, who also confirmed the incident, however, faulted the claims in some quarters that the clash was political.
He said, “Several persons, including Maj. Gen. Lawrence Ugbo, were killed and his body burnt to ashes. The clash has nothing to do with politics; it was a land tussle that caused the incident.”
Meanwhile, several residents of the affected community were said to have fled their homes for fear of further violence.