Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
Stakeholders drawn from Benue North East and West Senatorial Districts on Monday endorsed the formation of committees at the kindred, ward and district levels to assist security agencies in guaranteeing the safety of lives and property in their domains.
This was part of measures to step up the level of security in the state in the wake of several communal clashes especially in the two senatorial districts.
The stakeholders who met at Government House Makurdi, commended the proactive steps taken by Governor Samuel Ortom in fighting crime.
They stated that the security committees would fast-track intelligence gathering at the grassroots where most of those who perpetrate crimes and cause crises among the people reside.
Governor Samuel Ortom, while briefing newsmen shortly after the meeting, directed immediate revival of monthly security meetings at the local government level to support the police and other security operatives with timely and useful information.
The Governor announced the suspension of five traditional rulers comprising two district heads and three kindred heads for alleged complicity in land related disputes in their domains.
District Head of Uvir Council Ward of Guma Local Government Area, James Abu, who was among those suspended, was immediately handed over to the Police for further investigation.
Others suspended were the District Head of Ikov, Samuel Iorhule, Kindred head of Shilagh, Joseph Yar, Kindred head of Uninge, Aanger Ortese and Samuel Ayayo who is the Kindred head of Unyande.
The Governor stated that leaders, irrespective of political affiliation, had resolved to unite against land disputes and other forms of crises, saying they had resolved to also provide the desired leadership direction for the people.
Tor Tiv, Professor James Ayatse, Minister of Special Duties and Inter-Governmental Affairs, Senator George Akume, Senators representing Benue North West and Benue North East Senatorial Districts, Gabriel Suswam and Orker Jev respectively, as well as former Senate President, Dr Iyorchia Ayu and Senator Barnabas Gemade were part of the meeting.
Others in attendance were Members of the House of Representatives from Benue North East and West, State House of Assembly Members led by the Speaker Rt. Titus Uba, religious and traditional leaders.