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Benue killings: If you want peace adopt Ruga, Presidency tells Ortom

by Salami Azeez

The Presidency advises Governor Samuel Ortom to comply with President Muhammadu Buhari’s regime by accepting Ruga and other policies if he wants peace in Benue.

Mr Buhari’s media aide, Garba Shehu, said that Mr Ortom’s rejection of Ruga settlements was to blame for the recent spate of insecurity plaguing the state.

His remark came after the assassination of Benue residents by killer herders on Tuesday. Mr Ortom had said Mr Buhari’s “actions and inactions” were to blame for the violence on Tuesday, accusing him of Fulanization of Nigeria.

Mr Shehu, on the other hand, said in a statement on Thursday that the governor’s failure to follow the controversial Ruga policy demonstrated that he did not respect the interests of the people.

The governor had denounced the proposal, calling it misleading and detrimental to the interests of Benueans, who are mostly farmers.

“Under the Ortom administration, Benue should work with the federal government to enact a range of national strategy programs aimed at resolving underlying issues that thwart stability, change, and growth.

“This can only be achieved if the people’s needs are prioritized above all other considerations. A government that is elected by the people should regard the people as masters, not slaves, according to the declaration.

Mr Buhari also accused Mr Ortom of using the divide-and-rule strategy to incite religious and ethnic violence.

“As Nigerians, we accuse colonial rulers of a divide-and-rule strategy.

“Today, our own leaders are pitting region against region, religion against religion, ethnic group against ethnic group, and community against community,” the statement continued.

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