Herdsmen Attacks: Reps Urge Buhari To Protect Lives And Property

Herdsmen AttacksThe House of Representatives has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to uphold Section 40 of the 1999 Constitution he swore to by protecting the lives and properties of Nigerians. 

Chairman of the House Committee on Public Safety and Intelligence, Mr Aminu Jaji made the demand on the President in Makurdi, the Benue State capital during the committee’s investigation visit to Agatu and ten other local councils affected by herdsmen attacks on farming communities.

While the House committee also made a case for the reconstruction of the affected communities in Benue State, Governor Samuel Ortom maintained that the state is opposed to the creation of grazing reserves.

He urged the committee to visit scenes of the devastation to enable it legislate from an informed position; a request the committee promised to grant.

As the dust from the three months long herdsmen attacks on farming communities in 11 out of the 23 local councils areas settle down, the ruins still bears marks of wanton destruction.

Houses in ten electoral wards in Agatu were burnt to the ground while hundreds of local farmers were killed and properties worth millions destroyed.

Northern Governors Urge FG To Restore Civil Authority In North East

Northern GovernorsNorthern Governors in Nigeria have commended President Muhammadu Buhari and the military for the effort they have put in bringing the Boko Haram insurgency in the north east to an end.

At the meeting of the Northern State Governors Forum in Kaduna on Friday, the governors, while expressing satisfaction with the ongoing war against the terrorists, appealed to President Buhari to restore civil authority to the affected areas in order to ensure the safe return of Internally Distanced Persons to their communities.

They expressed concern over the frequent clashes between farmers and herdsmen in North West and North Central states that have left several people dead and properties worth millions of naira destroyed.

Chairman of the forum and Governor of Borno State, Kashim Shettima, who briefed reporters at the commencement of the meeting, stressed the need for an effective collaboration with security agencies in order to address the situation and other security challenges confronting the region over the years.

He also appealed to members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria also known as Shiites to appear before the Judicial Commission of Inquiry investigating the December 12, 2015 violent clash between them and soldiers in Zaria, Kaduna state.

According to him, by appearing before the commission, the Shiites will have the opportunity of stating their side of what happened during the incident.

The governors commended the Federal Government for its intervention in the Agatu crisis in Benue State by deploying security forces to the affected areas.

During the meeting, the governors will also discuss the Boko Haram insurgency in the north east, the socio- economic challenges confronting the region and how they can addressed them.

In attendance at the meeting were governors of Kaduna, Borno, Zamfara, Kwara, Kano, Katsina, Sokoto, Adamawa among others.

One Idoma Initiative, Miyetti Allah Seek End To Agatu Crisis

Agatu crisisLeaders of One Idoma Initiative and Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association are working together with a view to finding a lasting solution to the Agatu crisis.

As part of efforts to ensure peace in Agatu area of Benue State, they are appealing to the federal government to set up a committee that will comprehensively look into the immediate and remote causes of the crisis in Agatu communities.

Addressing a joint news conference in Abuja at the end of a town hall meeting held to resolve the Agatu crisis, leaders of the Idoma and the cattle breeders stressed the need for both parties to sheathe their sword in order to enthrone peace in the area.

The convener of One Idoma Initiative and the National President of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association advised the federal government to draw up a road map to commence the immediate reconstruction, rehabilitation and re-integration of the internally displaced persons from Agatu and the compensation of Fulanis who lost their cattle during the crisis.

Agatu IDPs Seek Protection From Herdsmen, Scramble For Supplies

Agatu-IDPsInternally Displaced Persons (IDPs) from the Agatu crisis, are asking the state government to beef up security at the Apa IDPs’ camp to prevent further attacks, amidst challenges of food shortage and lack of medical aids.

A traditional ruler in Apa Local Government Area, Mr John Anteyi, made the demand on behalf of the IDPs, whom he said were vulnerable to further attacks and lacking basic needs.

Responding to the rumoured attack on the IDPs’ camp in Apa by herdsmen, the state government represented by the Commissioner of Finance, David Olofu, said intelligence had been passed on to security agencies to act accordingly.

He assured the IDPs of immediate security response to the area for protection.

Last week, the Benue State Deputy Governor, Mr Benson Abounu, visited the IDPs’ camp in Apa with four Hilux trucks loaded with food items, but the supply ran out so fast due to the huge number of IDPs at the camp.

The lack of humanitarian aid to the IDPs also led to the food crisis.

The development prompted a retired Permanent Secretary from the Federal Ministry of Defence, Mr Mike Onoja, some Benue State Commissioners and the Otukpo Diocese of the Catholic Church to reach out to the IDPs.

Mr Onoja made a donation of 500,000 Naira while the commissioners and the Catholic Church handed over some food items to the camp manages.

The traditional ruler and the Catholic Bishop of Otukpo Diocese, Michael Apochi, said food and medical supplies were important, but security was the most pressing need at the camp.

While fighting and intense hostilities seem to be abating in Agatu, the herdsmen have turned attention to the Tiv land as Buruku, Logo and Kwande Local Government Areas have being attacked.