We are the representatives of over 400 ethnic nationalities spanning 14 states of the Federation. These states are Kwara, Kogi, Niger, Benue, Plateau, Nassarawa, Taraba, Adamawa, southern part of Kaduna, Kebbi, Bauchi, Gombe, Yobe and Borno. This region is generally known as the Middle Belt.
After two days of deliberation in Kaduna, we came up with the following resolutions:
- That we strongly condemn the quit notice given to the Igbo communities in some parts of the country by some misguided elements claiming to speak for us.
- That we from the Middle Belt would not in any way do anything to harm, harangue or threaten the Igbos living in our states. In fact, we have vowed to mobilize the Middle Belters and defend the Igbos in our states from any form of abuse, threat, intimidations or attacks.
- We are also bringing it to the fore that the Igbos are not only good neighbours but they are also peaceful and hardworking as opposed to some ethnic groups which specialize in murder of our people as seen in Agatu, southern Kaduna, Kogi, Taraba and Adamawa. It is such groups that should be issued with quit notice.
It should also be known that states like Kogi and Benue do have cultural, religious and geographical affinity with the Igbos; therefore, the Igbos are not only neighbours but also kith and kin with the Middle Belters.
In view of that, we support the arrest order placed on those merchants of war who ordered the Igbos out of the so-called 19 states of the Federation. However, we also note that Governor El-Rufai has refused to effect the arrest. We hereby request El-Rufai to effect the arrest immediately.
The Pogrom in the Middle Belt
Since the inception of this administration, it has been observed that the Fulani herdsmen’s dare-devilry against the Middle Belt has quadrupled. They have upped the ante in killings, raping, pillaging our lands and rendering millions homeless, orphans, widows and widowers with little or no efforts at all by the government in tackling them. Rather, the government would turn around to victimize and arrest victims of the herdsmen’s atrocities.
We are saying enough is enough!
The government should as a matter of urgency deploy battalions or armed brigades to the Middle Belt as it did in the case of the North-East and should also consider setting up the Middle Belt Development Commission.
On the 2019 Confab
We from the Middle Belt do lend our support for full implementation of the resolutions reached at the 2014 confab. We see it as the only panacea to the calls for disintegration, regional and religious crises. It is in this vein that we resolved to support any political candidate that would implement the resolution of the 2014 confab come 2019.
Mike Odeh Akatu Olonta
Dauda Ayuba Azzaman