Following discontentment on his silence since armed Fulani herdsmen attacks across the country, President Muhammadu Buhari finally spoke yesterday and ordered the inspector-general of police IGP Solomon Arase and other security agencies to seek out, arrest and prosecute the culprits as a lasting panacea for unnecessary killings perpetrated by suspected herdsmen across the country.
The president’s order was conveyed yesterday through a statement issued by his special assistant on Media, Garba Shehu, in Abuja, three days after the carnage unleashed on some Enugu communities on the border fringe with Kogi State.
Buhari in the statement condemned the attack in which over 40 people were murdered in the early hours of Monday in Ukpabi Nimbo in Enugu State, and reiterated his commitment towards ensuring safety of lives and properties in the country.
This is coming as members of the affected communities called on the federal government to institute, as a matter of utmost urgency, a judicial panel of enquiry to unravel the remote and immediate causes of the unprovoked attack and killing of innocent citizens as well as destruction of properties, including a Catholic Church, worth millions of naira.
The statement reads: “Following continuing reports of attacks by ‘herdsmen’ on communities across the country, particularly Monday’s attack on Ukpabi Nimbo in Enugu State, President Muhammadu Buhari assures all Nigerians, once again, of his administration’s continued commitment to ensuring the safety of lives and property in all parts of the country.”
The statement continued: “President Buhari unreservedly condemns the attack on Ukpabi Nimbo and other such acts of extreme violence against communities in other states of the federation.
“Acting on the president’s directive, the Inspector-General of Police and heads of the nation’s other security agencies are already taking urgent steps to fully investigate the attacks, apprehend the perpetrators and bring them to justice.
“Ending the recent upsurge of attacks on communities by herdsmen reportedly armed with sophisticated weapons is now a priority on the Buhari administration’s agenda for enhanced national security and the armed forces and police have clear instructions to take all necessary action to stop the carnage.
“In keeping with the president’s directive, the Inspector-General of Police, the general officer commanding the 82nd Division of the Nigeria Army, and the director of the Department of State Security in Enugu State have visited Ukpabi Nimbo to personally oversee investigations into the attack on the community and ongoing efforts to apprehend the culprits.
“Meanwhile, President Buhari is scheduled to meet with Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi later today to receive further briefing on the attack on Ukpabi Nimbo and discuss additional measures to forestall similar attacks and restore public confidence.
“The president urges all Nigerians to remain calm and assures them of his administration’s readiness to deploy all required personnel and resources to remove this new threat to the collective security of the nation.”
However, the Uzo Uwani Professionals Association, UZPA, has appealed to the federal government to urgently intervene to stop further attacks on its communities by herdsmen who cross into the area from the neighbouring Kogi State.
A statement signed by its president, Peter Anija Okoye, issued at the end of an emergency meeting of the association in Abuja yesterday, warned that the people of Uzo-Uwani would no longer fold its arms and watch any group or individual attack communities in the area for the single objective of killing, maiming of people and the destruction of communities any longer.
Frowning at the attack, UZPA stressed that “for the avoidance of doubt, about one hundred persons who were wounded during the incident are receiving treatment in hospitals at Nsukka and Adani while two more bodies were discovered yesterday during the visit of the governor of Enugu State to the community.
“We are aware of the tension building up in some of the communities in the local government especially four other towns listed as those likely to be attacked and therefore, call on the government to deploy troops and police mobile units to all the communities in the local government.
“We also demand the immediate constitution of a Judicial Panel of Inquiry by the federal government to unravel the real motives behind the unprovoked attacks of our communities. For instance, we need to know why despite warnings, the police and the military were unable to deploy to the area. We need to know if truly, a Fulani chief was killed in a farm settlement in IgalaMela council Area of Kogi and why our people are being attacked ostensibly in retaliation for that. “We also need to know why the Divisional Police unit in Uzo-uwani were unable to respond as quickly as it should during the attack. We also need to know why the police in kogi could not prevent the movement of such number of herdsmen without their livestock despite warnings to the kogi police of the plan to attack communities in Enugu. We also need to know why up till now the police are unable to apprehend any suspect in the event.
The association further urged National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, to urgently come to the assistance of displaced people of the area, many of whom it said were now living in squatter settlements, especially in Nsukka, Uvuru, Nkpologu, Ugbene Ajima and Omasi Agu in Anambra state.


  • dangle

    Where is the man who took the Indigenous people of Biafra to ICC on mere
    statement from fed. government hired DSS that two corpses were found at
    shallow grave at Abia state. Will he be bold to tell the ICC official
    on what he saw at Uzo-uwani? Over fifty (50) people killed by the fulani
    herdsmen and yet somebody is defending them at ICC. The herdsmen are
    the foot soldiers of APC whose agenda is to Islamize Nigeria.