President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday ordered security operatives to arrest and prosecute anyone found with illegal arms in the country.Buhari, who lamented the spate of reckless killings of innocent citizens across the nation, said “all attacks by suspected herdsmen will no longer be tolerated in north central and elsewhere in Nigeria.”
He gave the order in Lafia, Nasarawa State yesterday during his one-day working visit to commission projects executed by Governor Umaru Tanko Almakura.
Buhari stated that his administration was doing everything possible within its capacity to ensure the security of lives and property in the north central and the country at large. “We have deployed special resources to all affected areas to ensure peace and safety of lives. I therefore appeal to all Nigerians to refrain from reprisal attack as the government is on top of the situation.”
He said his administration would stop at nothing to deliver its change mandate to the electorate in the fight against corruption, insecurity and employment generation for the teaming youths.
“I, therefore, condole with those affected by this barbaric act of killings,” he said.
Meanwhile, Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom yesterday advised the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Ibrahim Idris, to respect himself by resigning his position to allow a more competent officer take charge of the security organisation.
Ortom gave the advice yesterday in a reaction to alleged comments by the IGP through the Force PRO, Jimoh Moshud, that he (Ortom) should resign his position and that he was a drowning governor.
He alleged that the IGP had completely neglected his duty of enforcing the laws of the land and became the mouthpiece of the Miyetti Allah Kauta Hore.
Ortom said: “It is most unfortunate that a police boss saddled with the responsibility of protecting lives and property of the people cannot contend with crises in the state and country but turn to make mockery of those who have been killed.
“Because we have chosen to obey the law, we have become a target. If the IGP will call me a drowning ship and ask me to resign, I want to ask him: is it me who is doing the right thing or him that is unable to protect lives and property of the country’s citizens as the police boss that should resign?
“If the president keeps quiet for an IGP who lacks capacity to contend with the herdsmen crises in the state and country, and he is insulting me, it is a shame. Today, he will say this, tomorrow he will say a different thing,” Ortom said.
He lamented that even the security personnel sent to protect lives and property in the state were being killed by the herdsmen.
“The man should resign because he has failed woefully. He doesn’t have the capacity. There are many good police officers who can take over that job and make things work, and protect lives and property. That man has no business being the IG,” he said.
Also yesterday, the governor announced the lifting of the curfew in Gboko town earlier imposed on the city on the 31 of January, 2018. He made the announcement at a meeting with leaders of motorcycle associations across the state and heads of security agencies at the Benue Peoples House, Makurdi.
Ekiti State governor, Ayodele Fayose, described the comment on Ortom made by Moshood on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily yesterday as an insult to all the governors in Nigeria.
Fayose said the police must retract the comment and tender an unreserved apology to Governor Ortom, the people of Benue State and the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF).
According to the governor, it is the height of irresponsibility for the PPRO to have insulted a governor who represents one of the federating units in Nigeria.
“It is now clear that the Nigeria Police has turned itself to an organ of the All Progressives Congress (APC) government, acting as if its only duty is to protect the interests of President Muhammadu Buhari and his allies.”
In a statement yesterday by his Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, Governor Fayose said rather than trying to gag Nigerians and acting as if they had become law unto themselves, the police should go after the killer herdsmen and their collaborators.
He urged other governors to speak against the disparaging comments on Ortom.
“I speak as the Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Governors’ Forum and I condemn that insult to Ortom by the PPRO.
“I expect the NGF to also rise in condemnation of this affront to one of its members because an injury to one is an injury to all. Besides, it is Governor Ortom that the PPRO insulted on a national television today; it can be any other governor tomorrow.
“On behalf of PDP governors, I condemn this irresponsible act of the PPRO and demand an immediate retraction of the statement as well as an unreserved apology from the Inspector General of Police (IGP).”