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From Msughshima Andrew, Makurdi

The Tiv Traditional Supreme Council, (IJIRTAMEN) has warned politicians from Benue state to desist feom making  attempt to change the true narrative on the killings in Benue State.

The Council gave this warning in a communique signed, Wednesday, at the end of an emergency council meeting held at the Tor Tiv’s Temporary Palace in Gboko, Local Government Area.

The meeting was summoned following acts by key government functionaries at the Presidency to change the narratives of Benue killings by killer Fulani herdsmen with their prominent politicians from Benue State.

The meeting presided over by Tor Kwande, Chief Ambrose Iyortyer who represented His Royal Majesty, Tor Tiv, Professor James Ayatse, recalled that Senator George Akume, during his visit to Aso Rock with some APC stakeholders recently, told President Muhhamadu Buhari that Benue people are the ones killing themselves and not the fulani herders.

The Tiv Area Traditional Council said that act was not only an attempt to change the narrative but also a mockery on the sensibility of the Tiv people and Benue State as a whole.

The Communique read, “That the attempt to change the narrative on killings by key officials in the Presidency and prominent politicians from Benue State smacks of mockery on the sensibility of the Tiv people and Benue State as a whole and thus condemned in its entirety and the framers of the hostile and wicked narrative that “the Tiv people are killing themselves”.

“Consequently, the Tiv Supreme Council view this as a disservice to the Tiv  Nation at this critical time of our trauma and urge all Tiv political actors and politicians to desist from making inflammatory statements over the barbaric and senseless killings of our people to avoid over heating the security situation in Tiv land.

“Rather, some politicians particularly of Benue stock should find ways of preventing the killer herdsmen from further unleashing havoc on the Benue people.

“We are most pained to the bone, most particularly over the Mbalom killing, where deliberate attempts are made to change the story, knowing too well that the two Priests and 17 parishioners were murdered by killer herdsmen on 24th April, 2018.

“The council decried cultists and cult related activities in the land and sued for all stakeholders to support security agents in arresting the ugly trend.

“Towards this end, Traditional Rulers, Vigilante Groups and Livestock Guards must imbibe intelligence gathering and information sharing mechanism for Law Enforcement Agencies to respond where quick action as desired.

“The Council also decried the state of insecurity in Tiv land and in particular Sankera axis comprising Katsina Ala, Ukum and Logo local government areas and opined that Government should continue with her concerted efforts in reversing  the trend.

The Council equally recalled that the Federal Government had earlier promised to assist the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) return to their ancestral homes by rebuilding their ravaged ancestral homes and appealed to the Federal Government to step up efforts in this regard.

The Council urged all politicians and youths to desist from political acts capable of generating tension, bad blood, acrimony and hatred within the polity for peace to reign in Benue State and Tiv land in particular.

They commend the efforts of the Federal Government for putting in place an efficient security outfit in Benue code named Operation Whirl Stroke, (OPWS), to curtail activities of killer herdsmen in Benue.

The Council also praised Governor Samuel Ortom for ensuring the safety and security of Benue people.

The Communique was signed by a five member Tiv Area Traditional Council including HRH Ambrose P. Iortyer, Tor Kwande/Acting Tor Tiv, HRH David Afaityo, Tor Jemngbagh, HRH Clement K.Uganden, Tor Jechira, HRH Abu King Shuluwa, Tor Sankera, HRH Julius Aondoana, Tor Gwer and the Secretary, Shinyi Tyozua.