Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State on Wednesday debunked the rumours that he has raised a militia.
He however described those who were accusing him or the state of raising a militia as enemies of the state who have taken sides with the oppressors of Benue to protect their ‘meal tickets’.
Ortom stated this when he played host to the Chairman Middlebelt Brain Trust, and former Chief of Defence Staff, General Martin Luther Agwai (retd.) and his delegation at the Government House in Makurdi.
The governor maintained that he has never contemplated raising a militia for any reason.
He said that the people of the state are going through a lot of pains in the hands of herdsmen, saying the presidency is aware that militia herders were brought from other countries into Nigeria with the sole purpose of taking over the land.
Ortom said that the testimony by the former Chief of Army Staff that some members of his delegation could not make it to Makurdi confirmed the security situation in Benue occasioned by militia herdsmen who also obstructed movement on the Makurdi-Lafia road yesterday.
He regretted that no meaningful intervention had come from the Federal Government as it has done in other states of the country to cater for the displaced persons scattered across the state.
He pledged the support of his administration to any genuine process that would lead to peace in Benue and Nigeria at large.
Earlier, retired General Agwai said he was in the state to meet with the Governor and stakeholders to have first-hand information on the cause of crises after which views would be collated and recommendations made for necessary action.
Lady Abduct, Murder Corper to Snatch Her Boyfriend
The Federal Capital Territory Commissioner of Police, Sunday Babaji, has said the late 26-year-old National Youth Service Corps member, Terungwa Stephanie, was allegedly killed from exposure to a corrosive substance.
The commissioner disclosed this while parading three suspects in connection to her death at the FCT Police Command on Monday in Abuja.
The suspects are: Jenifer Tsembe ‘f’, 26, Monday Simon (a.k.a Black) ‘m’, 36, and Solomon Abu ‘m’, 35.
Babaji revealed that the suspects conspired to kidnap the victim in order for Jennifer to have her alleged lover, one Edward Achadu, all to herself.
He said, “Our investigation revealed that the suspects criminally conspired and murdered the victim to separate her from Edward Achadu so that Jennifer Tsembe, one of the suspects and an estranged lover of Edward, could have him all to herself, especially for pecuniary benefits.
Tsembe told The PUNCH that she only conspired to abduct Jennifer and demand ransom from Achadu, but had no intention to kill her.
She also alleged that one of the other male suspects, Solomon, initiated the plan of the abduction.
However, the other suspects confessed that Tsembe, who is friends with the deceased, had conceived the plan for the deceased to come to her house where she requested their help to tie her upon her arrival. They alleged that after they had played their part, Tsembe instructed them to go away leaving the suspect, deceased and her child behind.
Simon said after he left, Tsembe had called him to say she needed help with the body because the deceased had died. Black, however, alleged that the suspect had already bathed her with acid by the time he arrived at the scene.
The Police commissioner, thereafter, said the Command had intensified investigation to reveal facts that could lead to further arrests of any other fleeing participant(s) in the criminal act.
He said, “The suspects will be charged to court. The command has intensified investigation to reveal facts that could lead to the arrest of any other fleeing participant(s) in the criminal act.
Terungwa Stephanie went missing after she reportedly left home with her one year plus five-months-old son on April 14, 2022, and never returned. Her son was later recovered at the Holy Trinity Catholic Church upon a call placed through to one of the paternal relatives a day after.
Police Declare Fleeing Suspected Killers of Deborah in Viral Video Wanted
The Nigeria Police Force, Sokoto State Command, have declared fleeing suspects captured in viral video of the killing and subsequent setting on fire of Deborah Samuel wanted for culpable homicide.
The deceased, who was, until her death, a 200-level student of Shehu Shagari College of Education, Sokoto, was accused of blasphemy after which some of her classmates among others stoned her to death before setting her body on fire within the school premises.
This was contained in a press release signed by the command’s public relations officer, ASP Sanusi Abubakar, and made available to newsmen in the state on Tuesday
He further explained that those arrested at the scene of the incident while dispersing the mob had been charged to court and the court remanded them in prison.
“The Sokoto State Command under the able leadership of the Commissioner of Police, CP Kamaldeen Okunlola, has declared the suspects spotted on the viral video wanted.
“The Command is using these medium to reiterate its commitment towards apprehending the suspects. The command has already deployed all its intelligence and on the lookout for the suspects .
“Members of the public are enjoined to cooperate with the police and report any mere identification to the command or any security outfit in their domain.”
“The command can be reached through its emergency number 07068848035,” he added.
Suspected Killers of Deborah Samuel Plead Not Guilty, Remanded in Prison Custody
Police on Monday arraigned two suspects, Bilyaminu Aliyu and Aminu Hukunci over the lynching of a 200-Level Home Economics student of Shehu Shagari College of Education, Sokoto State, Deborah Samuel, on May 12.
The suspects, co-students of the deceased, were arraigned at a Sokoto Chief Magistrates’ Court for their alleged participation in the crime.
They pleaded not guilty to the crime.
Prosecuting Inspector Khalil Musa told the court that an investigation was in progress as Deborah’s corpse was still in a morgue at the Usmanu Danfodiyo University Teaching Hospital, Sokoto.
Leading a team of 34 lawyers, the defence counsel, Prof. Mansur Ibrahim, applied for their bail on liberal terms, citing constitutional provisions and sections of the Administration of Criminal Justice Law.
The trial judge (name withheld for security reasons) reserved the ruling on the bail application and ordered the accused to be remanded at a correctional centre.
Before she was lynched, Deborah was accused of blasphemy on a WhatsApp chat platform set up by her course mates and refused to retract her post after she was asked to pull it down.
A violent street protest followed the arrest of suspects linked to the lynching of Deborah as the protesters demanded their immediate release by security operatives.
Governor Aminu Tambuwal consequently imposed a 24-hour curfew on Sokoto metropolis on Saturday. He relaxed the curfew on Monday to be observed from dusk to dawn.