Despite military presence, Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, on Tuesday, urged Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs, who were displaced due to Fulani herdsmen attacks, to go back home and defend themselves with stones.
The governor said this during his visit to the displaced persons, who fled their homes after armed herdsmen attacked Naka, Gwer West Local Government Area of Benue State.
Mr. Ortom said he was tired of keeping IDPs in Camps.
According to him, the killings were becoming uncontrollable and charged them to embrace self-defence.
The governor said, “David in the Bible used ordinary stone to defeat his enemy, it is now time for you to stay at home and use the stone in your homes to defend yourself instead of running away.
“I believe in the rule of law, equity and fairness, but I cannot continue to keep IDPs and l can’t afford to have another IDPs in Gwer West. This must stop. We must stop truncating the future of our younger generation.
“When we allow laws to be violated and nobody takes action, it then allows for impunity and when you give room to impunity, it will result to anarchy which will in turn breed a lawless society.
“Therefore, we the citizens must rise up to support the security agencies by way of providing lawful and necessary logistics such as information, equipment and financial support to back up their operations.
“Just yesterday (Monday), a soldier was killed in Guma, security agents are not spared. Security challenges are enormous. The gruesome murder of 24 people by Fulani herdsmen is quite condemnable.
“Time has come if you are willing to live in Benue State, you must be ready and willing to be law abiding.”
Speaking earlier, the Chairman of Gwer West Local Government Council, Francis Iyanga, disclosed that more than 22 persons were killed while seven others were injured during the attack on the communities.
He said that GwerWest has been at the receiving end of herdsmen attacks. In 2014, Fulani herdsmen applied chemicals on every water point in the area which killed hundreds of people and blocked the only road that linked the local government with the state capital for more than four months, he added.
Notwithsatnding military presence in Benue under “Exercise Ayem Akpatuma” – Operation Catrace – the killings by herdsmen in the state have continued unabated.