CAN decries condition of 1.5m Benue IDPs

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*Urges FG to resettle them to boost food production

Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, has decried the condition of the 1.5million Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs, in Benue State and urged the Federal Government to take urgent steps to resettle them in their communities to enable them return to their farms.

Chairman of CAN in Benue State, Rev. Akpen Leva, who raised the concern, yesterday, during a media briefing in Makurdi,  lamented that the suffering of the IDPs, who had remained in the camps for over three years after being sacked from their ancestral homes by armed herdsmen, should be a source of concern to the Federal Government.

He said: “It is disheartening and a clear indication of insensitivity on the part of the Federal Government that the IDPs in the various camps in the state are still suffering, more than three years after the Federal Government had promised to resettle them.

“Let me point out that the repercussion of the continued stay of the IDPs in the camps and the occupation of the houses of the original owners by the Fulani herdsmen is already glaring for all Nigerians to see.“It is indisputable that Benue State is the food basket of the nation and it is equally beyond doubt that the food basket has been threatened.

“The able bodied young men who would have been into farming activities are either dead or in IDPs camps and have not been into farming all these years.“The effect is not only on Benue people but the entire Nigerians. Prices of food stuff have skyrocketed beyond the reach of average Nigerians.”

He declared the support of the association for the creation of the Benue State Community Volunteer Guard, BSCVG, noting that the initiative would ensure the enforcement of the Benue grazing law as well as support conventional security personnel check acts of criminality and threats to lives and property in the state.Kicking against the bill regulating preaching in Kaduna State, Rev. Leva said: “The law is injurious to the church not just in Kaduna State but Nigeria and the world in general.

“It is a deliberate attempt to attack the church.”

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