Benue State governor, Samuel Ortom, on Wednesday approved the imposition of a dusk-to-dawn curfew on Gboko town from yesterday, January 31, 2018, until further notice to stop further killings in the area, following the killing of seven persons in the area.
According to him, President Muhammadu Buhari has not done enough to stop the killings in the state.
A statement signed by the Special Adviser to the governor on Media and ICT, Tahav Agerzua, said the curfew which will last from 6 pm to 6 am every day, was a result of security threats in the area.
“Those exempted from the curfew are those on essential services, such as hospital staff and others who show convincing identification.
“He has directed security agencies particularly the Police and the Army to provide round-the-clock surveillance in the town so as to forestall a breach of the peace.
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“The governor has appealed to residents of Gboko to comply with the curfew in their own interest as security operatives have been directed to arrest those found moving about in the town during the period of the curfew.”
Reacting swiftly to the President’s letter to the Senate, to the effect that he had taken measures to stop killings in the state, the state government said the President has not done enough to stop the killings.
Agerzua said: “You and I know that the killings are still continuing. Though the President has drafted the IGP to Benue State to stop the killings, that is certainly not enough. The killings are still going on.
“We cannot say he had done enough because he had notice of these killings a long time ago when these people held a press conference and threatened to invade the state; the governor wrote to him severally.
“Our tribal leaders also raised alarm and made appeals and also wrote an open letter to the President over the matter before the new year day killings.
“He has not done enough, though the killings have reduced but he has certainly not done enough.”
Reacting in a similar vein, chairman of the joint tribal leaders of Benue State, Chief Edward Ujege, said: “The President has not done enough by all standards because he is saying one thing and his lieutenants in the security council are busy saying another thing.
“The Minister of Defence recently attributed the killings to the grazing law. His Minister of Agriculture says the grazing law should not be obeyed because he wants cattle colonies.
“The Inspector-General of Police, who though came to Benue to apologize, said it was a communal crisis.
“So when your lieutenants are saying one thing and you are saying another and claiming that you are doing enough, what does that mean? It means nothing, so we don’t believe it. “What matters most is what comes from the heart.
His aides are saying one thing and he is saying another. We are not confident. It is just like telling you inside a room that it is morning but when you come out you discover that it is evening.
“So it is what his people say that is being implemented and worked with because they see him and speak with him and they know what he wants.
“I recall that when a delegation from Benue visited him, he said we should accommodate the people that are killing our people as if we are not accommodating strangers, we do accommodate good, law-abiding strangers. So we don’t trust him until we see him stop the killings.”