Victims of traffic crash, not Fulani ‘herdsmen’ attack in Nigeria’s Kogi state

A post on the “The Harcore Biafrans” Facebook page claims Fulani herdsmen invaded a transport terminal in Kogi state in central Nigeria and shot dead all the passengers boarding a bus to Edo, a state in the south of the country.

It was posted on 13 August 2019 and includes two photos. One shows three bloodied people lying in a vehicle. The other shows five people lying on a tiled floor.

The text reads: “In Kogi state herdsmen walked into the terminal of Big Joe transport and short all passengers boarding to travel to Edo state. Is this not more than war. Dismantle this evil Forest now.”

Photos from a road accident

A Google reverse image search led us to reports of a recent fatal traffic accident in Kogi state.

An article on the blog Trezzy Helm, reposted on Nairaland Forum on 9 August, shows a number of photos of the accident and its aftermath. They include the two used in the Facebook post.

“A terrible accident that happened at Ochadamu road, Kogi claimed the lives of many and got others injured,” Trezzy Helm reports. “The victims are at Grimard Hospital. See more photos below.”

State government and police debunk claim 

On 13 August the Kogi government dismissed the claim of a herdsmen attack, saying it was the work of “rumour peddlers who are on a mission to create panic and tension in the state”.

“Our attention has been drawn to some gory pictures on social media platforms, purporting that some herdsmen attacked a popular motor park in Lokoja and killed all passengers found there,” Kingsley Fanwo, spokesperson for Kogi state governor Yahaya Bello, said in a press release quoted in a number of national newspapers.

“We wish to allay the fears of commuters and residents of the state that nothing like that ever happened as all motor parks in the state remain peaceful. Our security operatives are also ensuring the security of lives and property in the state.”

Fanwo added that security agents were “already investigating the source of such fake news”.

Kogi state police also debunked the claim. – Allwell Okpi


 

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