Enugu, Nigeria (VOICE OF NAIJA)- Human Rights Writers Association Of Nigeria (HURIWA), has commended Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State over his decision to legislate the armed civilian vigilante to protect the citizens from the rampaging onslaught of armed Fulani Herdsmen.
Voiceofnaija.ng had reported that Governor Ortom on Thursday, approved the establishment of vigilante groups to combat the high rate of insecurity in the state.
The Governor noted that the renewed attacks on the people by armed herdsmen had overstretched security agencies.
The Benue Security vigilante outfit is deployed to protect every citizen of Benue State and law abiding residents of that state.
While applauding him on his decision, the human rights group asked Governor Ortom to ensure that the armed vigilante operatives are not manipulated as political goons like it is allegedly done with Ebubeagu in Imo State by Governor Hope Uzodinma, resulting in the constant genocide of Igbo Youths.
HURIWA through the chief of operations and founding Chairman Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko stated this in a statement on Friday.
Onwubiko said “the idea of self defence is supported by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and all relevant international humanitarian laws because human right to life is the only right that can’t be recovered when the life is killed by armed non state or state actors.”
HURIWA said that the herdsmen have killed over 3,000 Benue indigenous people over the past 7 years, describing it as salutary.
It regretted that the Governor’s decision has come so late in the day when so much destruction has been done by armed herders from all sorts of places, however, it is better to be late than never.
The group urged every “responsible governor” both in the South East and North to embrace this exemplary leadership of this Benue’s helmsman who gave “President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration enough time to stop the killings but got antagonistic reactions from the same office of President.”
“We support the security, stability and tranquility of Benue State because Benue State is very useful as the incontestable foods basket of Nigeria because since the killings by herders started in Benue, Yam tubers have now become rare commodities and so the decision to protect farmers in Benue State is agenda that every right thinking Nigerian should support now and going forward”, it added.