The attempt on the life of Benue state Governor, Samuel Ortom in many ways has cast a dark spot on whatever plans and rhetorics the government of the day have about addressing the security challenge the country is facing. The victim did not mince words in telling Nigerians and the whole world that his attackers were Fulani herders because of his stand on the anti-grazing law, being the number one citizen of his state. He had in the past also raised the alarm that there was a plot to confront his security details violently and catch him alive and kill him gradually also by these same mindless people before the latest incident happened. For this terror group to decide to waylay the convoy of a governor means that they were armed to the teeth. It also reveals that these bandits as we now call them have the propensity to dare the security details of Mr. President even though we know how Aso Rock reacts to the issues that affect the Fulani herdsmen and their activities of cattle grazing in the country.
The news we hear every day is about bandits, kidnappers, gunmen attack, rape and maiming and very many other vices that are on the loose in Nigeria, yet the citizens have not witnessed the prosecution of those behind these sordid acts, instead we hear about rehabilitation and reintegration of those who committed crimes against the state. Therefore, we don’t need a soothsayer to tell us why the criminals in our midst are emboldened to do what they are doing. It is still fresh in our minds that some brilliant police officers lost their lives in 2019, precisely August that year after arresting a notorious criminal, Wadume at Taraba enroute Abuja when unfortunately they came under heavy attack at a military road block. While the policemen were killed under those circumstances, the criminal ridiculously escaped and was later apprehended. Almost two years since the ugly incident happened, the matter has not been dispensed with by the authority.
The Kidnapping and killings are now daily issue and some people say it is the biggest enterprise since the perpetrators of the heinous crimes have become untouchable as the government has refused to wield the big stick and the confusion continues. The shoot at sight order as directed by the government even though many kicked against such pronouncement really has not deterred the enemies of the state who are bent on destroying the system. For example, the kidnapping of students of Federal College of Forestry and Mechanization on the 14th March in Kaduna took place few days after the shoot at sight order was given and up till now, the students are still in captivity. As usual, the students and their families are left in the cold. Although, the authorities in that state are saying that government is working round the clock to bring the students back to their families.
At the moment Nigeria may have lost count of how many people that are in captivity and not to talk of the number of kidnapping and maiming that are happening in the remotest villages at various communities and towns across the country that are not within the prying eyes of the press. The situation is dire and very precarious if we must admit The attack on Ortom, Benue State Governor the truth. Yes, the President, Muhammadu Buhari may have condemned the attack on the Executive Governor of Benue State but the declaration by the military that they would beam their search light on Asari Dokubor, Sunday Igboho and Nnamdi Kanu without mentioning the rampaging Fulani herders who unfortunately were fingered in the recent attack against the Benue state governor is very provocative because, the trio from what everyone knows are not terrorists but mere agitators fighting against injustices on the land, especially against land grabbing which has kept this government constantly on the news since it emerged six years ago. So the efforts to divert people’s attention from the real issue this time, especially now that there is change of guard in the military hierarchy would not work.
The military should rather go full length against the real trouble makers in the North East and West currently hiding on the mountains and caves where many innocent Nigerians, including women and children are being held in captivity. We demand full investigation into the assassination attempt on the Benue State governor, Samuel Ortom and that those behind the attack no matter how highly placed in the society should be punished to deter others that may have similar intentions to throw the nation into confusion. Again, we call on the newly appointed Service Chiefs to avoid embarking on the exercise that would cause panic all over the places but rather go after those that have caused the displacements of Nigerians from their ancestral homes and are bent on causing more havoc in spite of the olive branch extended to them by the Federal government.