Fulani herdsmen kill another 60 persons in Benue – Governor Ortom

Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom has disclosed that armed Fulani herdsmen last week invaded his village in Guma Local Government Area and killed more than 60 people while scores of others were rendered homeless, despite the launching of Ayem A Kpatuma military exercise to check the excesses of the invaders.

Also, a group known as Tiv Youth  Organization, TYO, has called for the total overhaul of the security architecture of the nation to accommodate other nationalities in Nigeria.

The Governor disclosed this while speaking at the funeral site of 73 victims of Fulani herdsmen attack buried on January 11, 2018 in Makurdi where he took Senior Pastor of Dunamis International Gospel Centre, Dr. Pastor Paul Enenche, and his wife, Becky Enenche.

“As at today, after the launching of the Exercise Ayem A Kpatuma, there has been an influx of over one million cattle into Benue territory. This is not acceptable but we believe in the exercise that they will ensure that justice is given to us because we are law-abiding, we don’t want to take laws into our hands. We believe that the federal government whose prerogative it is to ensure the enforcement of our law will support us”.

“After the burial of the 73 people killed by the herdsmen, more than 60 other people have been killed just last week alone. These are innocent farmers who went to do their legitimate farm work. But thank God for Mr. President, we appreciate him for sending the Exercise Ayem A Kpatuma to the state, we were told it is not an operation but an exercise”.

He said the recent killings followed fresh incursion into the area by the herders whom he said came in with over one million cattle in the now deserted communities.

The governor appealed to the military to flush out the invaders so that the over 160,000 displaced people who were in eight camps could return to their homes.

Pastor Enenche who anointed the land as a symbol to signify the breaking of its yoke, declared that the burial would also connote the internment of government and security failure, impunity, Jihadist agenda and all forms of evil in the country.

He prayed for God’s justice and judgment against the killers and their sponsors throughout the country and charged the earth to rise up against them.

“The Bible made it clear that the loss of a life is an irreparable loss. In the book of Mark chapter 8: 36, it says what shall it profit a man to gain the whole world and lose his soul. So the loss of one life is an irreplaceable, irreparable loss that is why we came to stand with the state to let the state know that God is aware of our mourning”.

But National President of The TYO, Mr. Timothy Hembaor who addressed a news conference in Makurdi, said the immediate overhaul of the security hierarchy will give room for true intelligence gathering and fair security play in the country.

He also, urged the Federal Government to without delay, direct troops of exercise Ayem A’ Kpatema to strictly adhere to professional conduct and put an immediate stop to the daily attacks, wanton killings and maiming of innocent,  harmless, defenceless and law-abiding Tiv people of Benue, Nasarawa and Taraba states.

Mr. Hembaor lamented the adamant failure of the federal government to arrest and prosecute leaders of the Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore and their sponsors who openly boasted about plans to carry out the New Year’s massacre of more than a hundred women, children and old man in Tiv land.

The group said it is preposterous that the Fulani are laying claim to the original inhabitants of the Benue Valley, pointing out that the narrative has not been supported by any historical account.

“The Tiv people are entitled to statutory rights over the lands of the Benue Trough where they have lawfully dwelt and earned a living from these past three centuries and have been so recognized by law.

“The Tiv people will resist with all means at their disposal, the confiscation of our land and transmutation of same into grazing areas for the Fulani and their cattle. In essence, the Tiv people are saying, ‘No To Grazing Areas of whatever sort in Tiv land.

“We, therefore, call on President Buhari to respect his oath of office and the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria,  both in content and spirit and sincerely intervene now and halt the killing of the Tiv people of Nigeria by his kinsmen.  Failure to do so, the Tiv people are capable of defending themselves against any occupation of our ancestral dwellings.

“We shall never succumb to the threats of Miyetti Allah neither cede any of our lands for cattle colonies which is a disguise to get a foothold on our land”, Timothy vowed.
New Telegraph

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