A four-year-old boy abducted in the heat of communal crisis between two villages of Konshisha Local Government Area in Benue State has been rescued unhurt.
Daily Trust reports that the development might not be unconnected with the efforts of the Benue State government in ensuring sustainable calm among warring communities when it brokered peace between the Bonta and Ukpute communities living at the border axis of Konshisha and Oju Local Government Areas of the state.
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Both communities had entangled themselves in an age-long dispute over land ownership which had led to loss of many lives.
Twelve security personnel deployed to the area on peacekeeping mission were killed also.
The crisis between the two communities had in mid-July this year escalated to Ochoro, an Igede community located in Konshisha, leading to the killing of the traditional head and alleged kidnap of some people said to be missing or taken into captivity, amongst whom is the rescued child.
But, on Sunday evening, the Chairman of Konshisha LGA, James Jirgba, gladly presented to Governor Samuel Ortom, the little Igede boy, known as Eje Moses Alia Eloneje, who was believed to have been taken away from Ochoro community of Konshisha during the crisis.
Ortom, who received the child on behalf of the Benue State government, offered a scholarship to the four-year-old, Eloneje from nursery to university.
He expressed joy that the child who was abducted during a fracas between the two communities was released after the state government’s marching order to Konshisha council chairman and other stakeholders in the area to ensure his release.
The governor while directing the State Commissioner for Education, Professor Dennis Ityavyar, to process the scholarship for immediate action, posited that the boy is a child miracle occasioned by his abduction and safe release.
He added that the only legacy to bequeath to a child is education, stressing that children are the future of the State and Nigeria at large and must be protected.
Ortom further condemned the abduction and reaffirmed the resolve of his administration to fight crime in all ramifications even as he commended leaders of Konshisha for securing the release of the boy and admonished the youth against crimes.
On his part, Senator representing Benue North East, Dr Gabriel Suswam, who was also present, condemned the act, describing it as unacceptable and pledged his support to Governor Ortom to continue providing security for lives and property of Benue people.