As part of its efforts towards ensuring that Mr Terwase Akwaza, otherwise known as ‘Gana’ is apprehended as a result of his involvement in abduction, killing, robbery, cattle rustling and other crimes that have been taking place in Benue, the State Security Council has announced a reward of N5 million for any person that gives information that would lead to his arrest.
Disclosing this while inaugurating state, local government, district and ward security committees that would enhance peaceful coexistence between herdsmen and farmers as the dry season sets in at Benue People’s House yesterday, Governor Samuel Ortom said Gana was granted amnesty after which he was given the job of collecting revenue for the state government but he decided to become a terrorist.
The governor said Terwase Akwaza should be tried and explained that security agencies have been careful in the search for him so as not to harm law-abiding citizens.
Ortom further stated that good management of information has become necessary now that herdsmen would be moving about with cattle and charged the security committees not to allow the relative peace existing between farmers and herdsmen to be breached.
He said when problem is identified in a place, it should not be allowed to degenerate and advised that timely information should always be released to the committees inaugurated at the various levels.
The governor said a seminar for stakeholders in the security sector was organized along with the inauguration to enable them have knowledge about the society and security and announced that at the state level, the security committee would consist of the security adviser who would be the chairman while security chiefs, the Tor Tiv, the Och’Idoma, chairman and secretary of farmers association, chairman and secretary of the Vigilante Group, chairman and secretary of Miyetti Allah and the leader of the Civilian Joint Task Force would be members.
According to him, the chairman of the local government would be chairman of the committee at that level while the divisional police officers, other security officials, Miyetti Allah chairman and the Civilian JTF leader in the local government would be members.
Governor Ortom said similar committees would be inaugurated by his Security Adviser, Col Edwin Jando, at the district and ward levels and observed that even as Benue’s position is that ranching would be the final solution to the problem of farmers/herdsmen frequent clashes, the matter would be handled gradually with the sensitization of cattle rearers and other stakeholders.