Published: Fri, January 12, 2018
IT | By Lester Massey

Benue Killings - Residents Mourn As Victims Given Mass Burial

Benue Killings - Residents Mourn As Victims Given Mass Burial

He recalled that a large number of Benue sons and daughters were among the contingents that fought the Nigerian civil war.

"Benue people sacrificed blood for the unity of this country and will not allow a section of Fulani herdsmen to kill our people in cold blood".

"We are capable of raising a million people to defend our land if nothing is done to stop the killings".

"Members of the Civilian JTF received weapons from the state governor Governor Ortom and his aides replenish ammunitions for these firearms whenever they are depleted "Members of the Civilian JTF had no prior training in the use of firearms but have been promised training by the state government. I am the spiritual and ancestral leader of the Tiv nation; enough is enough".

Similarly, the rights group has carpeted Federal Government functionaries including President Muhammadu Buhari, Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, Minister of Agriculture and Internal Affairs, Audu Ogbeh and Lt-Gen Abdulrahaman Danbazau (rtd), respectively for pandering to the whims of armed Fulani herdsmen by contemplating the deployment of public resources to promote private businesses of cattle rearing by establishing the illegal cattle colonies in parts of Nigeria.

Further demanding for the arrest of the leader of Miyetti Allah Kautal Houre, Unongo added, "If the Federal Government can not stop or arrest those behind the killings; in two weeks, we shall raise an army of our own. We can not allow people to colonise us again, we have all it takes to do that", Unongo added.

"Lawrence Onoja, former military governor of Katsina state, described the attacks" a conspiracy against the indigenes" and said it would be resisted. What we found out has been corroborated by the confessions of the members of the (Benue State) Civilian JTF on national television.

"The FG and the Benue State government should also open talks directly with the herdsmen who live in the bush than relying on negotiations with the leadership of the Fulani herdsmen in order to get to the root cause of their grievances. Aside the worldwide odium it will pour on the country, the current crop of federal officials may find themselves as guests at The Hague since there is all possibility that any indifference would equal an active support for the crimes being committed by officials of the second tier of government; there is the additional risk that the militias being armed by these governors would one day take on federal law enforcement personnel", he warned.

He added that reports showed that the spillover attacks in some communities of Benue had led to the displacement of so many people in the border towns between the two states. They further revealed that they were trained by ex-service men and they were brought together from all the localities in Benue State.

The representative of the United Nations, Dr Mathins Ejibike, in his condolence message to the government and people of the state, said killings in Benue required global attention. This is because we want to abide by the law. "We should pray that this killing should be the last in Benue State".

Tiv nation paramount ruler, Prof.

"We must put an end to these killings".

Ayatse said the herdsmen have attacked Benue 47 times in five years, attacks, saying the attacks were akin to an agenda of genocide. "Enough of the killings", he said.

He said, "If the herdsmen think that the killing of our people will make us to stop the enforcement of the law, they have failed". We will not be deterred because I am ready to pay the supreme price for the implementation of the anti-open grazing law. "I will continue to insist on the arrest of the factional leader of Miyetti Allah Kautal Houre".

Akpen Leva, chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in the state, urged Benue citizens to unite irrespective of tribe, political and religious differences in order to tackle their enemies.

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