Omololu Ogunmade in Abuja
The federal government last night in Abuja announced its preparedness to participate in the stakeholders’ meeting on protracted Tiv/Junkun clashes scheduled to hold in Abuja today.
A statement last night by presidential spokesman, Malam Garba Shehu, said the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation will represent the federal government at the meeting as both a stakeholder and guarantor.
The statement explained that federal government’s presence in the meeting is meant to give assurance of full federal government’s backing for the implementation of resolutions that will arise from the meeting.
It also said governors of the affected two states along with traditional rulers would attend the meeting.
“Following the public appeal by President Muhammadu Buhari to Governors of Benue and Taraba states as well as their traditional and political leaders for an urgent de-escalation of the crisis between the Tiv and Jukun ethnic groups, the two states have slated a meeting of stakeholders for tomorrow, Wednesday (today), at the Shehu Musa Yar’adua Centre, Abuja.
“The meeting between the representatives of the two states has been called to resolve the lingering Tiv/Jukun crisis, which has of recent, claimed lives of innocent persons and property.
“In addition to the two state governors, the meeting is expected to be attended by their traditional, religious and political leaders, as well as other stakeholders. ‘The Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (OSGF), is attending the meeting as a stakeholder and guarantor to assure full federal government backing for the implementation of resolutions arising from the meeting.
“A few days ago, President Buhari conveyed the importance of reducing tensions between the Tiv and Jukun neighbours and maintaining peace in the two states which had witnessed series of violent clashes,” the statement said.