This weekly update highlights cult violence in the Niger Delta with a particular focus on violent clashes between rival cult gangs in Bayelsa State. Recent data indicate an increase in violent clashes and supremacy battles among rival cult gangs in the state. According to data (see map below), over 130 cult-related fatalities were reported in Bayelsa State between January 2016 and May 2020.
Since the beginning of June 2020, there has been a sharp rise in rival cult clashes and reprisals in the state, particularly in Yenagoa LGA. On June 09, 2020, for example, four persons including a 17-year old boy who was a bystander, were reportedly killed during a clash between rival cult gangs in Amarata, Yenagoa LGA. In a separate incident, on June 15, 2020, three persons including a 50-year old man were reportedly killed during a clash between rival Icelanders and Bobos cult gangs at a drinking spot in Biogbolo, Yenagoa LGA. Five others including a woman suffered gunshot injuries during the incident. These incidents indicate that cult violence in the State is increasingly becoming intense and predatory including targeted killings.
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Image was sourced from the web