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June 5, 2023
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Letter to Benue Governor-elect Fr. Alia

Congratulations on your recent victory and I am so happy that the people of Benue state were not shortchanged as their votes in the last governorship and state houses ouse of assembly elections were not tampered with.

I am from Benue state which belongs to all of us. I have taken it as a duty and responsibility to monitor our leaders in the state and beyond, to advise when necessary and to call their attention to issues affecting people of the state with the hope of getting them resolved in order to administer the needed leadership that would cause development.

The outgoing administration of Governor Samuel Ortom has seen me as its enemy for advising, calling its attention to address issues, to correct its mistakes and also criticising its unbecoming policies constructively. But I believe you are going to welcome advise and criticisms.

Benue state produces the highest number of fruits and feed other states of the federation with same but the state has no juice processing factory, which can generate revenue for the state apart from creating jobs for the unemployed youth.

It is unarguable that fruits waste year in year out in the state due to the lack of idea on how to create jobs and income from the availability of these fruits in the state.

The attacks and killing of our people by herders is something to resolve but because of the fact that the needed idea has not been used and the previous governors in the state, especially the outgoing Governor Ortom, could not take advise but has been focusing on blaming and abusing the federal government for the attacks, it looks like something difficult to handle.

The former Governor of Ekiti state, Ayodele Fayose, while in office, made it necessary for all herders in the state to register and thereafter, they were given specific areas where they can graze their cattle. Fayose’s policy limited the movements of herders and there were no clashes between them and farmers.

Also, hunters were engaged to watch over the state and so everyone in the state was engaged to let people know that security is everyone’s business.

Fayose’s idea can be restructured to make it more effective to address the attacks and killing of our people by herders.

The outgoing governor came with a hasty decision as he declared amnesty for people in the state to surrender their weapons even when the killings by herdsmen were still ongoing. The amnesty programme came to an end and the killings escalated. The same governor was calling on the people again to own guns and defend themselves after collecting their weapons in the name of amnesty.

I believe you are carefully studying everything in the state and you won’t come up with hasty decisions or policies that would cause more harm than good.

I pray, hope and believe that you will make us proud. Once again, congratulations.

Awunah Pius Terwase,
Tv Host, Kaftan Television, Abuja
[email protected]

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