Following the death of 73 persons in two local government areas of Benue January 1, and the subsequent volatility in the state, the federal government has opted for a military option to restore peace on the state.
The option was recommended by the National Economic Council, NEC, headed by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and nine governors.
The police and other security agencies have been asked to recruit more rank and file to tighten security in the troubled spots and in the country generally.
A top government official told the Vanguard, “Decisive military force will now be fully engaged to deal with the bandits believed to be behind the killings in parts of the country, especially regarding the crisis often associated with herdsmen.
“The settled view in official circles is that the reported killings and violence recorded are the work of bandits and mercenaries, since in many cases the herdsmen are often well-known in the communities where their cattle normally graze.”
The NEC Working Group has also resolved to work with the federal government to strengthen law enforcement and all security and intelligence agencies in the country so they can coordinate better in dealing with, checkmating, and preventing the crisis from further escalation.
On how to permanently address the herdsmen and farmer clashes, the committee recommended that every state should by a rigorous consultative process with all stakeholders design its own solutions as the federal government will not impose any solution on any state.
The highlights also noted that the Working Group which consists of Governors from Zamfara, Kaduna, Adamawa, Benue, Taraba, Edo, Plateau, Ebonyi and Oyo States actually commenced its work with a meeting presided over by the VP right immediately after NEC at the Presidential Villa.