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Tiv group accuses government of complicity in raging massacres

The frame of a burnt out motorcycle is seen in a house burned down by Fulani herdsman in the Ganaropp village in the Barikin Ladi area near Jos on June 27, 2018. Plateau State in Nigeria has seen days of violence where more than 200 people have been killed in clashes between Berom farmers and Fulani herders, Nigeria is facing an escalation in clashes between farmers and Fulani herders over land use and resources that is deepening along religious and ethnic lines. STEFAN HEUNIS / AFP

A group, Tiv Youth Organisation (TYO), yesterday said comments so far from the presidency and members of the current administration at the federal level have suggested that politicians are backers of the herdsmen perpetrating the orgy of killings nationwide.

TYO’s President General, Comrade Timothy Hembaor, in a statement in Makurdi, Benue State, maintained that “all the cynical comments emerging from the presidency and top shots of the Federal Government are aimed at changing the well-known narratives about the herdsmen’s attacks on Nigerians nationwide.”

He continued: “Leaders of various Fulani groups have come out to state that cattle rustling is punishable by massive deaths.

“Yet, several others attribute the ongoing ethnic cleansing and jihad to the enactment of anti-open grazing laws.

“The most recent and perhaps, the most bizarre, is the claim that proof and evidence have emerged that politicians were sponsoring the killings across the country.

“Despite, the fact that leaders of Fulani groups have come out to state that cattle rustling is the reason for the killings, the presidency is, however, blaming politicians for the pogrom.”

He recalled that before the latest blame on politicians, some key officials had tied the crisis to climate change and the current state of Lake Chad.

Hembaor further said: “All these changing narratives are cover ups for the wanton massacres and land grabbing campaign of the herders.

“But we all know that the killings are a simple and straight forward story – the conquest and occupation of fertile lands in Nigeria – through a scorched earth policy.”

However, the Lagos State branch of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has called for immediate cessation to the killings nationwide.

Rounding off its three-day prayer and fasting yesterday at the Hoarse Memorial Methodist Cathedral, Sabo, Yaba, Lagos, the Christian body urged the President Muhammadu Buhari administration to be decisively with the crisis at hand.

The State CAN Chairman, Apostle Alexander Bamgbola, lamented that Nigerians were dying daily due to man’s inhumanity to a fellow human being.

Represented by the State CAN Secretary, Aladura Elder (Dr.) Israel Akinadewo, Bamgbola urged Christians not to rest on their oars by continuing to commune with God to intervene in the plight of the nation.

The CAN chairman noted that the perpetrators of the dastardly acts were having a field day because those in positions of leadership were not feeling the pinch.

Also, the Association of Catholic Medical Practitioners of Nigeria (ACMPN) has beseeched government to check the mayhem in the land with a view to averting anarchy.

In a communiqué at the end of its 13th Conference and General Meeting in Benin City, Edo State, the doctors and dentists stressed the sanctity of human life, adding that those displaced by the Boko Haram should be adequately taken care of by the Federal Government.

Signed by the national president and secretary of the association, Dr. Emmanuel Okechukwu and Dr. Agbo Hadiza, the document urged that appropriate technical know-how and management prowess should be deployed in addressing the contextual health challenges of the people and communities nationwide.

Also yesterday, the Nasarawa State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chairman, Francis Orogu, accused some elders in Alago of sacrificing the future of the people on the altar of personal aggrandisement by colluding with powerful interests to impose cattle ranches on host communities.

Addressing a press conference yesterday in Lafia, Orogu stated that he was being insulted by some of his brothers whom he claimed were allegedly sponsored by the ruling party in the state to give vent to the establishment of cattle ranches in three Alago communities.

He alleged: “People are carried away by the hug allocation of N179 billion by the Federal Government to build cattle ranches in 10 states which include our state, not knowing the grave consequences of such venture on the communities that are already under attacks by herders.”

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