Again, Ortom Raises Alarm over Influx of Herdsmen to Benue


George Okoh in Makurdi

Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, yesterday raised the alarm that the state is under the siege of Fulani herdsmen, saying “we are helpless.”

Speaking to journalists in Makurdi after receiving the civil society organisations in his office, the governor said the security arrangement in the state could not curtail the influx as a result of their numbers.

Ortom lauded the efforts of the military Operation Whirl Stroke (OPWS) in curtailing the security challenges posed by Fulani herdsmen invasion, adding that the troops have been overstretched.

While stating that the anti-open grazing law of the state still on course, the governor said his government is looking for alternative ways to complement the security agencies to tackle the possible security breaches.

He said: “You know there is influx of herdsmen in the state but we are helpless because we are law abiding citizens.

“Though, the OPWS are still in town and they have been doing their best, they are overstretched. They have been overwhelmed.

“They need more personnel and equipment because of the superior power force of the herdsmen. The advantage OPWS have is that they have capacity on land, air and sea.

“Our intention is to see all the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) go back home but we are faced with security challenges. Uptil today, there are attacks in different communities in the state.

“Our law is still in place and nobody will stop us from implementing it. Any herdsmen who violates the law will be apprehended. Already more than 400 have been arrested with 100 facing prosecution.

“What we have agreed in this meeting is to look for alternative way that is legal that will complement the security agency to help them stamp out this menace. We are not going to fold our arms. We are moving on.”