Benue Govt Sues Miyetti Allah Over ‘Killings’
The Benue State government has sued the leadership of Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore amid the repeated killings of innocent citizens in the state.
According to the state governor, Samuel Ortom, who revealed this on Monday, the government dragged the group before the State High Court, Markurdi, on the allegations of murder and widespread violence across 14 out of the 23 local councils of the state.
Governor Ortom disclosed this at the Government House while briefing reporters on the new security approach to curb the repeated killings in the state.
He faulted the alleged inaction of the security forces to arrest the group for purportedly threatening violence; an act he claimed resulted in the multiple deaths since 2018.
The state government had in 2017 petitioned the Federal Government, as well as the heads of the police and the Department of State Service.
They called had also called for the arrest of the President of Miyetti Allah, Abdullahi Bodejo, and his secretary, Alhassan Saleh, who were accused of issuing the threats during a press conference in June 2017.
A Warning Issued
However, Mr Saleh has since denied the allegation and distanced the association from the recent killings in the state.
He said they had warned the Benue State government against implementing the anti-open grazing law as it would generate a lot of confusion in the state.
“We told him (Ortom) that look; you can’t go by that way. The reality is that you cannot proscribe pastoralism overnight. It is going to be a process that has to encompass policies and programmes that would take a period of time.
“We have written to the government of Benue State, we have written to all the relevant security agencies, telling them why we are opposed to this law; but what His Excellency Governor Ortom did was to dismiss our organisation, claiming we don’t have members in Benue,” Saleh said during his appearance on Sunrise Daily in January.
The implementation of the anti-open grazing law in Benue has been greeted by a series of attacks on some communities in the state, with several lives lost since the beginning of 2018.
While the killings have persisted, no few than 30 persons were killed in separate attacks on some communities in the state last week.
The Nigerian Army, however, said it has arrested a major Boko Haram suspect “believed to have masterminded most of the recent attacks” in the state.
The suspect, Aminu Yaminu, who is nicknamed Tashaku, was arrested on April 27, by a combined team of security operatives from the Army, police, and the Department of State Services.