A Nigerian police officer who went missing in Benue State on Saturday has been found dead, locals told PREMIUM TIMES Monday.
The officer, whose identity has not yet been disclosed, was amongst the four mobile police officers that went missing following an ambush on their patrol vehicle in Logo Local Government Area on Saturday.
The incident occurred in Tse Akpam village, near Azege town around 3:00 p.m. Saturday afternoon while the officers were returning from a peace-building mission in remote villages, Police Commissioner, Fatai Owoseni, told PREMIUM TIMES.
The remains of the officer, said to be a sergeant, were found in the bush on Monday morning and had been deposited at a morgue in Anyiin, another town in Logo LGA, locals said.
Enoch Nyikyaa, a chief in Logo LGA, told PREMIUM TIMES he saw the remains of the officer in Azege on Monday morning.
Terkura Suswam, a politician and founder of Ashi Polytechnic in Anyiin, said the officer’s body arrived at NKST Hospital in Anyiin Monday morning.
Other residents of Anyiin and Azege also informed PREMIUM TIMES of the officer’s death in separate telephone interviews Monday morning.
Moses Yamu, the police spokesperson in the state, is yet to respond to PREMIUM TIMES requests for comments about the development Monday morning.
The commissioner, Mr. Owoseni, referred this reporter to the police spokesperson for comment on the matter.
The location of the officer brought to three the total number of personnel so far accounted for in the attack, which Mr. Owoseni told PREMIUM TIMES was carried out by suspected herdsmen.
PREMIUM TIMES broke the news of the attack on Saturday evening and reported on Sunday that two officers had been found unhurt.
Search and rescue efforts are underway for the last officer.
Mr. Suswam, whose polytechnic campus currently shelters hundreds of IDPs in the ongoing herdsmen crisis in the state, decried the failure of federal authorities to go into the hideouts of the killers.
“Clearly, these people are in the bushes around here from where they’re launching their gruesome attacks,” Mr. Suswam told PREMIUM TIMES by telephone Monday morning. “Now we wonder why it’s so difficult for the federal government to track them into bushes and bring this matter to an immediate end.”
President Muhammadu Buhari has denied dithering on the crisis, telling the Senate in a letter last month that he had deployed hundreds of police special forces in the area and constituted a special committee led by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo to help resolve the crisis, amongst other efforts.