Benue State governor, Samuel Ortom, has given 72 hours to the people of Agatu to produce those who recently killed Badamasi Aminu, one of the soldiers deployed in the area to keep the peace.
Ortom made the demand while decrying incident which occurred at Ole Gadakolo near Egba in Agatu on Saturday.
“The action is condemnable, I apologise”, he said. “I have informed the elders and traditional rulers from the area to within 72 hours bring those behind the killing of the soldier.”
The governor told journalists at the Government House in Makurdi, the state capital, that various weapons were recovered from a militia group in the area during the military operation in Agatu communities.
He sent his condolences and those of the people and state government to the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen, Tukur Buratai, and the commander of the 72 Special Forces Battalion, which lost the soldier, with the assurance that the state government would work with security agencies and traditional rulers to fish out the killers.
Ortom warned the people against taking laws into their hands as security agents can maintain law and order. He said if Agatu youths had surrendered their weapons during the amnesty programme of his administration, the incident wouldn’t have occurred.
He appreciated the Nigerian Army and the commander of 72 Battalion for the efforts being made towards restoring peace in Agatu and reiterated government’s commitment towards doing everything possible to get the perpetrators.
Earlier, the special adviser on security, Col. Edwin Jando, who displayed the weapons recovered from a militia group in Agatu, told the governor that luck ran out of the youths when they encountered the soldiers as they left a place they celebrated the anniversary of the killing of one of them.