President Muhammadu Buhari has urged Benue State leaders to accommodate their fellow Nigerians, to end the crisis in the state.
Buhari, however said he has directed security agencies to track down the killer herdsmen attacking communities in Benue State.
His media aide, Femi Adesina, in a statement, stated that Buhari, who issued the directive at a meeting with Benue State’s political and traditional leaders, as well as, elders at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, told them that he will never shield criminals.
He said all those involved in the attacks, including herdsmen and illegal militia will be arrested and prosecuted.
The President called for restraint from all parties in the conflict, adding that, relevant agencies had been directed to provide relief for the victims of the herdsmen attack.
“Your Excellency, the governor, and all the leaders here, I am appealing to you to try to restrain your people. I assure you that the Police, the Department of State Security and other security agencies had been directed to ensure that all those behind the mayhem get punished.
“I ask you in the name of God to accommodate your country men. You can also be assured that I am just as worried, and concerned with the situation,’’ he said.
Also speaking with State House correspondents, Governor Samuel Ortom, said they demanded the arrest of the killer herdsmen.
Other Benue State leaders at the meeting, held at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, include the Tor Tiv, a former senate president, David Mark; former governor George Akume, Senator Barnabas Gemade and former justice minister, Michael Andoakka.
Others at the meeting were former senate president, Chief Joseph Wayas, defence minister, Mansur Dan-Ali, agriculture minister and Chief Audu Ogbeh.
Top government officials at the meeting included the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, the National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno, and the Director General of Department of Security Service, Lawan Daura.
On Sunday night, the President also met with the Senate President, Bukola Saraki; and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara on the Benue crisis.