Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, yesterday pleaded for assistance from the Federal Government, individuals and corporate organizations to provide succor for thousands of people displaced by the recent killings in Agatu Local Government Area of the state.
The governor made the plea when he visited three schools where those displaced by the attacks are currently seeking refuge.
The schools are Local Government Education Authority, LGEA, Central School, Ugbokpo; Methodist High School, Ojantele; and Methodist Primary School, Ataganyi, all in Apa local government area, which shares boundaries with Agatu.
Over 3, 000 persons, made up of mainly women and children, have been registered in the camps with the number expected to rise in the coming days as more displaced persons troop in.
Represented by his deputy, Engr. Benson Abounu, the governor described the crisis as one of “unimaginable proportions”, saying something concrete must be done immediately to alleviate the sufferings of the people.
“These are people with new born babies, I’ve seen many of them who have twins that are just two-three months old, you can see that water is a problem, even where to ease themselves is a problem, so it’s a very serious crisis that we have on our hands”, Ortom said.
He appealed for assistance for the survivors of the attack, saying “You know these people here have to eat so we brought rice, garri, sugar, indomie noddles, maggi, other food items and soaps for washing just for immediate relief”.
According to Gov. Ortom, the state government took several proactive steps including hosting of several meetings between herders and farmers as well as holding joint security and peace meetings between Benue and Nasarawa States on the matter.
He also welcomed the directive by President Muhammadu Buhari that a full scale investigation be launched into the crises even as he sought the deployment of the army and other security agents to quell further escalation of the crisis and to restore normalcy.