The tribal leaders of Benue have slammed the recent call by the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai for a review of the state’s grazing law to accommodate killer herdsmen.
They warned that such call could further embolden the marauders to unleash more killings in states like Benue.
Speaking through their Chairman Chief Edward Ujege, the leaders under the aegis Mdzough U Tiv (MUT), Idoma National Forum and Omi-Ny’Igede, while commending the Army Chief for his dogged fight for a peaceful Nigeria, derided his counsel.
He said: “He (Buratai( was quoted as saying that the laws should be reviewed in such a way that everyone is given a sense of belonging. By implication, General Buratai’s position is that even terrorists like ISIS, Boko Haram as well as other categories of militants should be given a sense of belonging in our country and Benue State in particular after being chased out of our communities.
“We fault his counsel because the duty of the Nigeria Army is to provide security for lives and property especially when such security cannot be guaranteed by the Police or other sister security agencies. In other words, the Army or military is the last resort as far as dealing with security challenges of this nature in the country is concerned.
“The truth of the matter is that the happenings in BenueState predate the enactment of the Benue State law to prohibit open grazing and establishment of ranches. Indeed, there are many other states across Nigeria where these murderous acts are presently occurring, for which no such laws have been enacted. These include Adamawa, Zamfara, Ondo, Kaduna, Plateau, Cross River, Enugu and Edo states.