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Buhari convokes summit on herders’ attacks

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President Muhammadu Buhari will next week convene a regional conference of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in Abuja to come up with a framework to stop the killings perpetrated by suspected herdsmen.

The Minister of Interior, Lt.-Gen. Abdulraman Danbazau (rtd) gave the indication yesterday while briefing State House Correspondents after a meeting of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) in Abuja.

He said the Federal Government was disturbed by the menace and was set to collaborate with nations to tackle the illegal movement of goods, persons and services.

Fielding questions on the influx of foreigners, minister said: “Of course, it bothers us.  Particularly, those of us in the Ministry of Interior since we have immigration under our supervision and we have the responsibility on border security.”

Danbazau said the government was concerned hence it initiated the conference to be declared open on the 26th and 29th of this month.

His words: “This is why we initiated the conference that is to come up between 26th and 29th of this month under the ECOWAS protocol on free movement of persons, goods and services. Zeroing particularly on the protocol of trans-humans which was signed in 1978, we are yet to implement it. 

“I had a meeting with the President of ECOWAS Commission, the one that left and we agreed to have this conference sometimes last month but they were leaving, and the new set of management coming in shifted it to the end of this month.”
 
Meanwhile, the acting governor of Benue, Benson Abounu, has raised alarm that a large number of “hired armed herdsmen mercenaries are being planted around five major communities with intent to simultaneously launch attacks to take over the state.”

Citing security report at his disposal, he stated that the mercenaries had already been well positioned.

Speaking after a State Executive Council meeting in Makurdi, Abounu noted that the prevailing security situation calls for urgent attention with a view to safeguarding lives and property.

Also, 17 persons have been given a mass burial in Lafia, the Nasarawa capital amid tears.

The President of Tiv Youth Organisation in the state, Comrade Peter Ahemba told that leadership of the body was left with no option than to bury the victims outside their places of abode.


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