Two traditional rulers in Konshisha Local Government Area, the Vice Chairman of the Council and the Councillor representing Mbagusa/Mbatsev Council Ward where 12 soldiers were killed on Easter Day have been handed over to the police for investigation.
In the same vein, the Benue state government, working with stakeholders in the affected area, have also retrieved eight of the 12 rifles taken from the slain soldiers.
Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom made this known on Monday after presiding over the State Security Council meeting in Makurdi, the state capital.
The governor commended the stakeholders of the Konshisha who were in attendance for supporting the government to achieve the promise he made to the military high command and the federal government that everything would be done to recover the confiscated weapons.
He said, “In line with the promise I made to the military and the Defence Minister we have so far recovered eight of the 12 rifles, including a machine gun that was removed from a van. This has brought the recovered weapons to nine since the military had earlier recovered one.
“The process of recovering the remaining three is in progress and we will ensure that all the weapons are recovered and returned to the army.”
The governor stated that those handed over to the police for further investigation were the District Head of Iuuar Nyam, Chief Unaha Koko; acting kindred head of Mbator, Chief Emmanuel Achirgbenda; Vice Chairman of Konshisha LGA, Mr Sam Kave and the councillor representing Mbagusa/Mbatsev Council Ward, Mr Mela Yange.
“We believe that these four people will assist the police in the investigation of the matter,” Ortom said.
According to the governor, the Security Council also instructed him to lead a delegation to President Muhammadu Buhari to condole with him over the death of the soldiers and also apologise for the sad experience.
Meanwhile the Benue State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) has carried out an assessment of the destruction and damages caused by the crisis in the community.
The Executive Secretary, Benue State Emergency Management Agency, Dr Emmanuel Shior who visited the affected areas on Sunday revealed that Governor Ortom directed him to visit the areas and evaluate the victims for immediate intervention by providing relief to cushion their predicament.
While interacting with the traditional rulers, community leaders and the victims, Shior, who condemned the attacks on the community by the military and as well as the attack on the military by the militia said the governor was doing everything possible to bring peace between the feuding communities of Konshisha and Oju.
Addressing some of the victims at the Gungul Market Square, Shior urged the Federal Government, relevant agencies and Non-Governmental Organisations to swiftly come to the aid of the victims of the crisis.
Youths and traditional rulers in the community while welcoming the team expressed sadness over the incident in the area and applauded Governor Ortom for his peace efforts. The areas affected and assessed by the SEMA team were Gungul, Agidi, Aku, Adoka, Bonta, Gbinde, Tse-Anyon and Guleya communities.