Benue Youth Forum has called for the arrest of the leadership of the Miyetti groups, Fulani Nationality Movement (FUNAM) and other terrorists.
The Youth Forum made the call in a statement signed by its President, Terrence Kuanum, on Friday.
This is coming after the Nigerian Government arrested Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
In the statement, Kuanum noted that the arrest of the leadership of the Miyetti Allah groups and FUNAM will drastically reduce tension and prove that the President Muhammadu Buhari government is willing to accord justice to all Nigerians at long last.
“Before now, it was apparent that the intelligence network of Nigeria’s security forces had malfunctioned particularly as it bordered on the inflammatory and treasonable utterances of the leadership of Miyetti Allah groups who have at different times claimed responsibility for the killing of hundreds of innocent Nigerians. We in the Middle Belt have been the worst hit," the group said.
“Groups such as the Fulani Nationality Movement, FUNAM have repeatedly attacked and killed many defenceless people and have come out to state that more blood will flow. In March this year, the group publicly said it had carried out the attack on Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom. Though the Governor escaped the assassination attempt, FUNAM vowed that they won’t relent until they hit their target."
Kuanum pointed out that Nigeria's security agencies heard the group’s threat loud and clear but looked the other way.
"In fact, they absolved all Fulani groups of blame in the attack on the Governor," he said. "They treat anything that involves herdsmen with kid gloves."
The Benue group maintained that recent events have left the people of the Middle Belt perplexed on how the same intelligence that failed to give them protection and justice could morph into a gallant and active force using Interpol to track down Nnamdi Kanu who they claimed instigated the killing of 55 persons but would ignore the Miyetti Allah leadership who have claimed responsibility for dastardly acts.
“We find it appalling that in a country where there seems to be no justice the federal government through its agencies will choose to go after those only agitating for independence and allow those causing mass deaths and destruction to the very foundation of the nation. The aggression with which Nnamdi Kanu was trailed and arrested smacked of a skewed and misplaced priority," the group's president said in the statement.
“The agitations for the restructuring of Nigeria in the face of gross marginalization and wanton killings need to be appreciated by the government because no nation ignores its citizens in penury as it is the case of this country. Nnamdi Kanu’s IPOB and other separatist groups are only responding to the failure of Nigeria to give its citizens equal opportunities and freedoms.
"Such freedom fighters are therefore not worse than sworn terrorists like Miyetti Allah groups and FUNAM who do not only want the collapse of the country but also want to appropriate it to themselves as their ethnic possession."
The group claimed that President Muhammadu Buhari’s recent media outing to mark his sixth year anniversary aggravated issues in the country.
"The President should be told that his insistence that cattle routes and grazing reserves be opened across the country will surely set the nation ablaze," the group said.
“We expect that the federal government will immediately direct security agencies to arrest the leadership of the Miyetti groups and FUNAM with the same zeal they apprehended Nnamdi Kanu. Now they have demonstrated the capacity to nab and extradite a suspect even from a foreign land so nothing should stop them from arresting Miyetti Allah leaders and other terrorists who live and dine in cozy hotels in Abuja.
“The arrest of the leadership of the Miyetti Allah groups and FUNAM will drastically reduce tension and prove that the Buhari government is willing to accord justice to all Nigerians at long last.
“We remain committed to the unity of this country but we seek for justice, fairness and equity to sustain the unity, peace, and progress necessary for a healthy and strong nation.”