Ortom makes a volte face, says no more amnesty for criminals in Benue


Weighed down by emotion and visibly angry at the murder of Terkura Suswam by unknown gunmen, Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, on Saturday, said that there was no more amnesty for criminals in the state.

He spoke at the burial of Terkura Suswam, immediate elder brother to a firmercgovernor of the state, Gabriel Suswam, at Anyinn in Logo Local Government Area of Benue State.

The governor decried the conspiracy of silence among the people which, he said, was making the crisis to linger.

Terkura Suswam was murdered by some gunmen at his country home, Anyiin, sparking off renewed fears about targeted attacks by some groups of bandits and criminal elements in the state.

Ortom criticized the criminality in the local government areas of Sankera, Logo, Ukum and Katsina-Alla.

According to him, the Benue state government on his watch would no longer negotiate with any criminal.

He restated his administration’s commitment to go after those who had engaged themselves in crime and criminality in the state, particularly Sankera axis.

According to him: “From intelligence report, some members of the community are supporting these criminals which makes it difficult for security men.

“I want to assure youths in the state not only in Sankera that we are going to go after these criminals and by the grace of God we will get them.

“There is no more amnesty, no more negotiation with them (criminals) except they come back like the prodigal son and plead for forgiveness.”

He called on Sankera people to support the government and security agencies in order to restore normalcy in the troubled local governments.

Governor Ortom said the killing of Terkura was appalling.

He regretted that his murder might discourage indigenes who wish to invest in their respective localities.

Read him: “What our administration is encouraging is local investors since the government cannot provide a job for everybody.

“With the number of investments Terkura had established in Anyiin, thousands of youths were taken out of labour market.

“So for him to be killed this way is very unfortunate. Other people who may be planning to come home to invest will be discouraged.”

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