Middle Belt leaders ask youths to defend selves, property


The National Youth Leader of the Middle Belt Youth Forum, Comrade Emma Zopmal, has challenged young people in the region to protect their lives and properties in face of government’s seeming inability to secure them.

Speaking yesterday at one-day zonal summit with the theme, Political and Security Situation of Middle Belt: The need for roadmap, in Jos, Plateau State, Zopmal decried the killings in the region and the silent disposition of the Federal Government towards the carnage.

He reasoned that if the foreigners as claimed by the authorities crossed the borders unhindered, security agents should be able to pick them up on arrival at the nation’s shores “because they feel they can cross the borders into our soil to kill us like animals.”

The youth leader canvassed the creation of state police for better internal security.

Noting that the Yoruba, Bayelsa and Ibo people as well other regions had never invaded Middle Belt with a view to killing them, “then if where we were before now (the far North) is constituting a threat to our existence, then we have to break up from them.

“We cannot give an inch of our land for cattle colony or whatever for people who are not interested in our progress and development.”

Earlier, the chairman of Middle Belt Forum (MBF), Dr. Bala Takaya, said the zone was collaborating with the south to make meaningful impact during the 2019 general elections as well as check herdsmen’s invasion and killings nationwide.

He noted: “The handshake across especially with South/South, South/East and South/West is to address salient issues affecting the zones. We are not standing aloof. We are working together in the struggle for an equitable Nigeria through restructuring.

“In demonstration of the handshake recently, leaders from the southern parts of the country were received by the leadership of the Middle Belt in Benue State in solidarity with the people and government of Benue State over the recent killings.

We have solid relationship and we are in support of what Governor Samuel Ortom is doing. He should not waver. An attack on one is an attack on all.”

He charged the youths in the region to be more proactive and defend their God-given lands.

Takaya reminded the gathering that the movement was initiated by youths like the late Joseph Tarka, who believed in themselves and were not deterred.

He regretted that the zone was becoming vulnerable to attacks because the youths were not coordinated and united, stressing the need for synergy to arrest the menace.

The keynote speaker and the MBF’s delegate to the 2014 National Conference, Mr. John Dara, urged unity and support for public office holders from the zone.
Currently an All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA|) presidential aspirant, Dara enjoined the youths to form a formidable force to check invasions.

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