President Muhammadu Buhari will today meet with Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom and other stakeholders from the state – in a bid to resolve the crisis sparked by the herdsmen killings.
No fewer than 73 victims of the herdsmen’s actions were buried at the weekend. Over 60,000 displaced persons are in five camps.
About 60 injured people were on admission at the Benue State Teaching Hospital in Makurdi. Some of them have been discharged.
A victim with a broken skull has been taken to Primus Hospital in Abuja for referral service.
The state government has released more than N100million to take care of the victims and the displaced.
Ortom, in a chat with The Nation in Makurdi, said he had ordered the arrest of those instigating the Tiv-Hausa clash or any form of ethnic crisis.
He also insisted that those who attacked innocent farmers in the state are known. Besides, the governor stressed that the state will reject the creation of cattle colonies as a solution to attacks by Fulani herdsmen.
Ortom demanded the arrest of the leaders of Miyyeti Allah Kautal Hore, especially its President Abdullahi Bello Bodejo, and National Secretary Saleh Alhassan.
He said he raised the alarm of impending attack in a memo to the then Acting President, the National Security Adviser (NSA), the Inspector-General of Police, and the Directorate of State Security Service(DSS).
The governor added that when President Muhammadu Buhari returned from his medical leave, he sent to him another memo in October 2017.
Ortom said: “We are meeting on Monday. The stakeholders are going to meet with the President. The stakeholders will see whatever the Federal Government is able to put on the table and if the stakeholders accept, I will abide by it.
“It is Benue stakeholders. It is at our own instance; we requested that we are going to meet with him.
“So far, we have over 60,000 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), but we are still counting. We look forward to these people going back home very soon. Some had to run away out of fear because of the way these people came to attack. They came around 2am, 3am, 5am in the dead of the night.
“It was more of a guerrilla war against the people. In some cases, they did not even shoot guns so that the next person would not hear. They come to your house, wake you up and slash your throat.
“We are doing our best but the situation is under control. For the past four days, we had no news of any killings. It was only on Saturday that I heard that one person was killed. I am yet to get full briefing on that.”