- The Benue people have decided to take their own destinies into their hands to protect themselves
- Stakeholders in the state have compelled Governor Samuel Ortom to set up a security outfit
- The governor stated that the personnel of the vigilante group would be armed in order to defend themselves
The Benue government, on Thursday, May 6 approved the establishment of vigilante groups to combat the high rate of insecurity in the state.
Governor Samuel Ortom disclosed this when he briefed journalists attached to his office on the outcome of the expanded stakeholders’ meeting held at the new banquet hall of the Government House, Makurdi
Ortom said renewed attacks on the people by armed herdsmen had overstretched security agencies, stressing that his government had decided to enforce the law to establish vigilante groups.
He said the vigilantes would be constituted from the community to local government levels to complement the operations of conventional security agencies across the state.
Ortom explained that the recruitment process would commence immediately, adding that those to be recruited would be within the age range of 18 to 50 and mostly ex-servicemen.
Punch newspaper quoted the governor as saying:
“All the vigilantes must carry weapons that are licensed so that anytime there is external aggression, they must be able to rise up to defend themselves.”
Meanwhile, stakeholders at the meeting passed a vote of confidence on Governor Ortom according to a statement sent to Legit.ng by the Benue state government.
The stakeholders are Benue indigenes across party lines, traditional rulers, the clergy, national and state assembly members as well as past and present leaders.
They stated that Governor Ortom has demonstrated true leadership qualities and has risked his life in the interest of the people.
The motion for the vote of confidence on the governor was moved by leaders of the three main socio-cultural Organisations in Benue state.
A data analyst and journalist, Rotimi Sankore has taken to his Twitter page to give reasons why Nigerian governments at all levels are failing to address the mounting insecurity in the country.
According to him, Nigeria is failing to address the problems due to:
1. Bandits and extremists have plenty of recruits
2. 100 million citizens are in extreme poverty
3. 60 million citizens are unable to read or write
4. 10 million to 13 million children are out of school
5. Unemployment is at 33%
In a related development, the British Minister for Africa, James Duddridge, has described Nigeria’s security situation as massively complex, stressing that no partnership would resolve the multiplicity of the country’s problems.
Duddridge made the comments while responding to questions from journalists attached to Nigeria's ministry of foreign affairs.
The British minister had visited his Nigerian counterpart, Geoffrey Onyeama on Tuesday, April 27 to discuss matters of interest between both countries when he was accosted by the reporters.