The Benue House of Assembly has called on security agencies in the state to initiate urgent plans to check the growing menace of insecurity in Okpokwu Local Government Area (LGA) of Benue.
The House made the call, following a motion of urgent public importance moved by Assemblyman Anthony Agom (Okpokwu-PDP) at the plenary on Wednesday.
In the motion, Agom informed the House that the people’s security in Okpokwu LGA had been under severe threat in recent times as a result of incessant kidnapping, cultism, robbery and arms proliferation.
“Within the last three months alone, there have been more than five cases of kidnapping in Okpokwu LGA, where one Mrs Addah and her relative, Robert, were kidnapped.
“Addah was released after the payment of a ransom of N2 million, while Robert is still in the captivity of the abductors due to the non-payment of ransom,” he said.
Agom explained that if the incidents were not urgently addressed, the economic and social lives of the people of Okpokwu LGA would die out, as the residents were now afraid to go about their normal businesses.
Seconding the motion, Mrs Agnes Uloko (Ado-PDP) said that the security agencies must step up their efforts to stamp out kidnapping and other social vices in the state.
Contributing, Deputy Speaker of the House Christopher Adaji expressed worry at the rising criminal activities in the state and called for strengthening of the vigilante groups to support the conventional security agencies in tackling the menace.
The House, therefore, called on security agencies to set up surveillance mechanisms in and around Okpokwu LGA to forestall further kidnapping and other criminal activities.
The House also advised the people of Okpokwu to be vigilant and report any suspicious activities in the neighbourhoods to the appropriate security operatives.