Benue SEMA Bans Political Activities In IDP Camps
The Benue State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) has banned all forms of political gatherings in Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camps across the state.
The agency announced the ban in a statement issued on Friday by its Executive Secretary, Mr Emmanuel Shior, following a political rally in one of the camps at Daudu in October.
Mr Shior explained that the decision became necessary in order to avoid any public embarrassment on the displaced persons and to stop political figures from using the IDPs’ misfortunes for cheap capital.
He decried that the rally which held on Friday last week left behind many issues that deserve very strong caution and portray some political leaders in a very bad light.
The SEMA boss said, “Let it be noted that cross carpeting in the Nigerian context of politicking can be done at any time by anybody, but the manner the Daudu event was done leaves much to be desired for those cross carpeting and the ones receiving them.
“The choice of the venue is unacceptable and should be condemned in totality by all well-meaning Benue people and indeed Nigerians.”
Mr Shior admitted that there was no doubt that the IDPs were readily available to listen to anybody that visits them.
He added that the IDPs were always eager to hear the good news that they would soon return to their homes where they have been forced to stay away for about one year.
According to him, the most condemnable aspect of the action of the politicians is the intimidation and harassment of IDPs by heavily armed security personnel guarding members of the party.
“Some of the IDPs who spoke with me accused some party thugs of manhandling them when they spoke glowingly about the Benue State Government with regard to their upkeep in the camp upon interrogation.
“Checks revealed that a woman, who had a fracture in the course of the manhandling, is currently receiving treatment in an undisclosed location,” the executive secretary said.