Benue State Monarch as allegedly accused the Police for hiding the Fulani Herdsmen militant. Fatai Owoseni, Benue State Commissioner of Police responds in an interview.
“That is very sad. Not just sad, but I know that no revered monarch in this state will say that. Maybe some people are making those statements disguising as monarchs. What I know is that all the revered monarchs in this state have acknowledged that the police and other security agencies are doing their best to put an end to security challenges. They will not come out to say that the police are under instruction to protect Fulani. That will be very sad, given the losses the Nigeria police have suffered.”
“What the Nigeria police deserve now is encouragement because the police personnel, who are not indigenes, are in the state to serve their fatherland. Many of them have been hacked down in the crisis. It will be unfortunate for anyone to say that the police are under instruction to protect one side or the other. Our obligation to the people of this country is to discharge our statutory duties of protecting lives and properties and pronto, that is exactly what we have been doing without bias to any political, tribal or religious leaning. We must also emphasise that the police have remained the major organisation that has contributed to the unity of this country. The IG has supported every effort in bringing an end to this crisis; a Deputy IG has been on the ground, except if people wouldn’t say the truth. For the past two weeks, we have seen a drastic reduction in the hostilities and that is something people of this state should commend”.
“I will repeat it: It is very sad and unfortunate. Anyone that makes such insinuation must be an agent of conflict in the state, what we need is for every stakeholder to partner with the police and other security agencies to ensure that we are able to get those causing crisis in the state. As I speak to you, I can roll out the areas we have covered. We have interacted with various IDPs. We have placed security in the areas in order to give them assurance. If you go round to some of these places, some of the displaced persons have come back fully, some partially. The ones I said returned partially are the ones who would go to their communities during the day but in the evening, you will see them in the camps, maybe, for shelter or for food. What we should be thinking of now is how to rebuild, because if we do not rebuild those communities, even if you have 100 per cent security there, people will still be going in and out of the IDP camps.”