- Governor Samuel Ortom has been very vocal about the overwhelming state of insecurity in the country
- While his colleagues have largely been silent on the matter, Ortom has been consistently bringing up the issue and offering solutions
- In his latest press briefing, the governor urged the president to take concrete steps to address the situation
Benue state governor, Samuel Ortom, has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to declare a state of emergency on security.
Ortom made the call on Thursday, February 11 while addressing journalists including a Legit.ng reporter in Abuja.
The governor also stated that those carrying out attacks on communities in Nigeria are not Nigerians but foreign Fulani herdsmen, who he said took advantage of the country's porous borders to gain entry.
“I call on the president to declare a state of emergency on security so that all resources and all strengths will be channeled towards ensuring that we have security for lives and properties in this country.
“Because, for now, everything is in disarray and without security, there can be no meaningful development.
“The president must come out and take steps that would redeem his image. President Buhari served this country as a military head of state and Nigerians appreciated him for he was and that was why overwhelmingly he was voted into power in 2015.
“But what is happening now, the body language, shows clearly that he is not the president who is supposed to be the president of everybody and for nobody.
“It is clear to me that the president is the president for everybody and for some people.”
Meanwhile, in a letter to the president, Governor Ortom said the security challenges faced by the country have assumed a new and dangerous dimension.
As part of his recommendation on how to deal with the crisis, Governor Ortom asked the president to develop a National Ranching Policy in line with global best practices.
He also advised the president to direct the Nigeria Police Force and other security agencies to enforce Prohibition of Open Grazing Laws passed by various States of the federation including Benue.
Above all, the governor asked President Buhari to ensure that justice, fairness, and equity are evident in all issues relating to public safety and security.
Similarly, Senator Francis Fadahunsi has declared that the unhindered cattle movement in Nigeria is responsible for the herders/farmers crisis in the country.
The senator who represents Osun West Senatorial District in the National Assembly made the comment while speaking to selected journalists recently in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
The lawmaker also declared his support for those calling for legislation that would stop the movement of cattle across the country.
In a related development, the Northern Elders Forum (NEF) has told the Fulani community in southern Nigeria to return to the north if they are forcefully ejected from their host communities.
The NEF also called on the northern governors to be ready to receive the Fulani community who would return as a result of forceful ejection.
The demand was contained in a statement issued by the spokesman of NEF, Dr. Hakeem Baba-Ahmed on Tuesday, February 2.
Jerrywright Ukwu is a senior political/defence correspondent at Legit.ng based in Abuja. Jerrywright is a graduate of the Nigerian Institute of Journalism, Lagos and the International Institute of Journalism in Abuja. He is also an active member of both the Nigeria Union of Journalists and the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations. He spends his leisure-time reading history books.