Youths boo, stone Ortom as military battle Benue protesters

Posted by News Express | 4 January 2018 | 1,800 times

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•Governor Ortom

Protesting residents booed and stoned Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State, as government drafted troops to quell the massive protest and prevent mayhem.

The Governor had gone to placate the restive youths at Wurukum where the protest took place in Makurdi on Wednesday.

Reports say that soldiers from 72 Battalion North Bank engaged the enraged youths and two protesters were wounded.

Early on Wednesday, residents trooped out in their thousands to protest against the January 2 herdsmen’s attack on farmers in which 20 people were killed.

The protesters are calling on the Presidency to bring the culprits to book.

They carried placards with inscriptions such as “Presidential intervention needed”, “Why value cows to humans”, and “Stop this incessant blood bath”.

Some of them chanted: “We will not vote for the present administration both at the state and federal level if this crisis don’t stop”.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the protests involved mostly youths who barricaded major roads leading in and out of Makurdi, the state capital.

The youths have vowed not to leave the streets until the Presidency spoke on the killings.

They were also asking government to intervene in the series of other attacks on some rural communities by armed herdsmen.

Mr Terhemen Anum, a protester, told NAN on Wednesday that residents of Guma and Logo Local Government Areas were yet to determine the number of peasant farmers, women, children and the aged that were killed.

Another protester, Mrs Ruth Agba said the farmers' killing and the destruction to their homes and farms were not different from Boko Haram activities in the northeast.

Ortom told journalists on Wednesday that 20 people were killed in the mayhem.

He called on the Federal Government to wade into the matter so as to avert further destruction of lives and property.

Meanwhile, the Police in the state has confirmed the arrest of eight herdsmen in connection with the New Year Day’s attacks.

The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Mr. Moses Yamu said on Wednesday in Makurdi that “eight herdsmen – six in Guma and two in Logo – have been arrested in connection with the attacks.”

He added that the command had made additional deployments to the troubled area to forestall further occurrence and restore confidence of the people.

Yamu stressed that the situation in the two local government areas had been brought under control while investigation was on-going. (NAN)


Source: News Express

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