Says he will not hesitate to prosecute or depose any one of them who encourages conflict

The Benue State Governor, Gabriel Suswam, on Tuesday, said he will arrest and prosecute any traditional ruler that encourages or fuels communal conflicts in any part of the state.

The governor made the announcement in Otukpo, during a reconciliatory meeting held with stakeholders and traditional rulers of the warring Ojantele and Ijekwu communities in Otukpo and Obi local government areas.

?What has happened in your communities that led to deaths and destruction of lives and property is, to say the least, unacceptable and condemnable,” he said.

?It is more painful because we hardly hear of such sad developments in this part of the state; and that is the more reason why you must all talk to your people to desist from further escalating the crisis.

?I must also caution that if the fighting continues, we will not hesitate to apprehend the paramount rulers of the affected communities and, if necessary, we will also not hesitate to depose them.?

No fewer than 10 persons were feared dead last week, and property worth millions of naira destroyed in a bloodbath that followed a renewed dispute over a piece of land between the warring neighbours.

The incident also displaced about 120,000 inhabitants who fled from the  crisis.

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