Governor Samuel Ortom has charged Benue people to venture into rearing of goats, piggery and poultry farming among others as an alternative to beef.
He gave the charge today while celebrating the 2018 Christmas with Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs, at various camps in Ugba, Anyiin, Abagena and Daudu in Logo, Makurdi and Guma Local Government Areas respectively.
The Governor advised the people to also take to rearing of native cow in order to discourage them from patronising Fulani cows, stressing that an independent survey last year revealed that N2.1 billion was spent by Benue people in buying cows for Christmas celebration.
He stated that any Benue person alleging that people of the state were behind the killings in the state should be taken to a psychiatric hospital for examination for insanity.
Governor Ortom noted that it was disheartening for any sane person to exonerate the militia herdsmen of killings in the state when the herders had on several occasions claimed responsibility for the killings citing conquest agenda and rustling of their cattle among others.
He stated that he chose to celebrate the Yuletide with the IDPs in the camps because he would have also been in the camp as an IDP if he were not a Governor, pointing out that his village was also overran by the herdsmen militia.
The said he received reports that herdsmen were moving in large numbers into Guma and Logo LGAs but warned that a law against open grazing was still in force and must be obeyed, stressing that he had given security agencies charge on that.
In separate remarks, Ter Logo, Chief Jimmy Meeme and the Council Chairman of Logo, Mr. Richard Nyajo, said Governor Ortom had stood for the truth and God would not let him down, pointing out that the people of Logo would support him to achieve his desire for the state.
Dr. Terkula Suswam and Majority Whip of the State Assembly, Mr. Kester Kyenge stated that the Governor had done what is unprecedented by choosing to celebrate Christmas in IDPs camps.
They noted that Logo with over ninety thousand registered voters would deliver them in block to the Governor in 2019, adding that the Governor is not a candidate of the PDP but that of Benue and needs to be supported.
Executive Secretary of the State Emergency Management Agency, SEMA, Mr. Emmanuel Shior, thanked Governor Ortom, humanitarian service providers and international agencies for their various interventions to the upkeep of the IDPs, even as he pledged sustained prayers for the Governor and his administration.