From Austine Tule, Makurdi
The Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), Makurdi Branch has urged Benue indigenes to cooperate with the Army when it commence its Operation Cat Race in order for peace to return to the state.
It also added that the IGP Ibrahim Idris should be held responsible should anything happen to Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State following what they said has been his bias stand against the people of the state regarding the killings by Fulani herdsmen.
The Chairman of the association, Barr Emmanuel Agbakor stated this on Tuesday during a world press conference held at its secretariat in Makurdi.
”All Benue inhabitants must cooperate with the Army in ensuring the return of peace and order in our ravaged communities.
”We call on Benue people to remain calm, law abiding and vigilant in the wake of these perilous times.
”We call on the Operation Cat Race to observe operational rules throughout the operation including non-harassment and non-looting of communities,” he said.
He called on the National Human Rights Commission, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch as well as International Red Cross Society and other relevant agencies to be on ground to observe the activities of the Army to have first-hand information.
He further assured Gov Samuel Ortom of Benue of their unflinching support, adding that he should remain firm in the discharge of his duties such as the implementation of the Benue State Open Grazing Prohibition and Ranches Establishment Law 2017.
He also said that Ortom had disarmed people with illegal weapons and consequently granted amnesty to them upon assumption of office in 2015 and wondered why people were saying he had recruited and armed militia.
”This also negates the allegation that the government has recruited untrained personnel and armed them with prohibited arms to operate as Livestock Guards,” he said.