From Uche Nnorom Makurdi
Leaders of the three (3)) major socio cultural groups in the southern part of Nigeria yesterday were allegedly denied landing permit to grace the Middle-Belt Conference in Makurdi, the Benue state capital.
Chairman of the Middle-Belt Elders Forum, Air Commadore Dan Suleiman (rtd) who disclosed this at the Middle-Belt Mega rally held at the IBB Square in Makurdi, said leaders of the socio- cultural groups including South-South Forum, Ohaneze-Ndi-Igbo and Afenifere, were left stranded at the Abuja airport for five hours.
He said the leaders who were billed to attend the conference in Makurdi converged in Abuja to board a flight but were left stranded at the airport over the alleged refusal of their flight to land in Makurdi.
Suleiman maintained that despite challenges confronting the region, the Middle-Belt will remain united and continue to march forward to greatness.
He stressed the need for restructuring of Nigeria so as to allow for fair sharing of resources, insisting that justice must be delivered to people of the region.
Senator representing Benue North-East Constituency Sen. Barnabas Gemade urged all nationalities in the middle belt to stand up and work together as people of the same culture, race irrespective of their language and religion and fight for the emancipation of the middle belt.
Governor of Taraba State Darius Ishaku appreciated the National Assembly for initiating a bill to establish state and local government police and sued for accelerated attention and passage.
“If the bill is passed and subsequently signed into law, it would go a long way to address the incessant killings. Killing people is another form of corruption and in fact, the worst of it all. When someone steals one million, he is prosecuted but when some people kill innocent people in their sleep they are allowed to walk freely. This must stop. Nigeria is a great country but it is wasting away. Every state in Nigeria is a potential country of its own”, Ishaku said.