News: President Buhari calls for restraint as he meets Ortom, stakeholders

President Muhammadu Buhari has called on the government and people of Benue state to exercise restraint following the recent attacks on some communities, as he assured that all the perpetrators of violence would face justice.

President Buhari said this on Monday, January 15, when he received a delegation of political leaders, traditional rulers and elders of the state led by Governor Samuel Ortom at the Presidential Villa, President Buhari. A statement by Femi Adesina, the president’s spokesperson, quoted Buhari as saying all those involved in the conflict that culminated in loss of lives would not escape justice, including any illegally armed militia in the state.

The president commiserated with all the victims of the attacks, and the families who lost loved ones and properties, noting that the government would make efforts to ameliorate the situation of all the victims.

President Buhari and the Benue elders who met with him. Credit: President Buhari The president said he had directed relevant agencies to start catering for the humanitarian needs.

“Your Excellency, the governor, and all the leaders here, I am appealing to you to try to restrain your people. I assure you that the police, the Department of State Security and other security agencies had been directed to ensure that all those behind the mayhem get punished.

“I ask you in the name of God to accommodate your country men. You can also be assured that I am just as worried, and concerned with the situation,” he said.

Buhari told the delegation that his administration had already begun a process of finding lasting solution to the perennial challenge of herdsmen conflict with farmers and communities around the country.

He also said the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) had been directed to relocate to the state to provide security for lives and properties. He urged all Benue indigenes to trust the security agencies and report all suspicious cases of movements in the state. Speaking at the meeting, Benue state governor, Samuel Ortom, said the tension would be reduced with the Federal Government’s intervention to find a lasting solution to the herdsmen attacks.

“We will leave here to rebuild confidence in our people,’’ he said. The statement said the Tor-Tiv, Prof James Ortese Iorzua Ayatse, said his entire domain had been thrown into mourning due to the incessant attacks. “We want you to put an end to the gruesome situation,’’ he added.

At the meeting were Benue deputy governor, Benson Abounu, former Senate president, David Mark, former governor, George Akume and Senator Barnabas Gemade.

Others include Senator JK Waku, Gen Lawrence Onoja (rtd), Brig Gen.John Atom Kpera (rtd), former Attorney General of the Federation and justice minister, Michael Aondoakaa, speaker of Benue House of Assembly, Terkimbir Kyambe, and other legislators.

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