IGP Idris did not spend 24 hours in Benue, Buhari told

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*Benue governor wants leaders of Miyetti Allah arrested

President Buhari and Governor Samuel Ortom in Makurdi

President Muhammadu Buhari was told in Makurdi today that the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, violated his order that he should shift base to Benue State, at the height of the bloody clashes between herdsmen and farmers.

At the town hall meeting held in Makurdi today, Buhari was told that Idris did not even spend 24 hours in the state.

An apparently surprised Nigerian leader remarked:

“I am not aware that the I-G did not spend 24 hours in the state as directed by me, I am getting to know this in this meeting.”

“What I did was to call him and give him (a) directive. And I didn’t know he moved here (Benue State) and didn’t spend (time) and then move to Nasarawa. It’s only now that I am knowing that. But I know I dispatched him here,” the President said.

He added that as a loyal leader, he would engage the IGP for inquires upon his return to Abuja.

“At every level, you have to be loyal to people below you. Whether that person is loyal to you or not is totally a different thing,” President Buhari said.

“The easiest thing for me was to go on air and accuse the IGP of being too slow and not using the intelligence and resources available to him to foresee the action of the cattle rearers and so on. People would believe me, but I will be disloyal if I do that.”

He appealed to the Benue people to exercise restraint and live in peace with their neighbours.

President Buhari told the meeting attended by farmers, herdsmen and government officials including Senators and Members of the House of Representatives, that he was doing his best to tackle insecurity in the land.

He denied insinuations that he overlooked the killings that happened in Benue, saying he is genuinely worried over them.

He said rice imports had dropped by 90 per cent and said states were massively involved in rice cultivation.

On his part, Gov Ortom appealed to the president to upgrade the ongoing military exercise in the state tagged ” Ayem A kpatema” to an operation to effectively curb herdsmen attacks.

”If the exercise is upgraded to an operation, it will assist greatly in ending the incessant attacks and senseless killings by herdsmen,” he said

He urged Benue people to exercise restraints and learn to live in peace with other people.

He said that many states in the federation were now involved in massive cultivation of rice.

He reiterated his call for the arrest of the leadership of Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore for being responsible for the killings.

Ortom still maintained that ranching was the best option for cattle breeding in the country.

He also called on the federal government to take over the management of the Benue University Teaching Hospital, College of Education Katsina-Ala and Benue Polytechnic Ugbokolo.

Representative of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN), Benue Chapter, Shettima Mohammed, denied responsibility for the Benue attacks.

He said the association was peace loving and the exact opposite of its public presentation by government officials.

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