Governor Alia orders removal of roadblocks from Benue highways
The Governor of Benue, Rev. Fr. Hyacinth Alia, has ordered the immediate removal of illegal roadblocks in various locations in the state. Alia, who gave the order during a thanksgiving Mass in his honour by the Post Transition Committee at St. Winifreds Parish Ihugh, explained that such roadblocks constituted security threats and promoted illegal activities in the state. The fact that a number of youths are seeing roadblocks as a lucrative business. It is part of the insecurity that is created. Once we get rid of that, we will know who the miscreants are that are causing disharmony. We would not want them to be under the guise of illegal businesses. The governor urged organizations concerned with such activities in the state to immediately ensure strict compliance with the new directives. The removal of illegal roadblocks to prevent the misuse of such roadblocks by hoodlums. The instruction is given to allow free movement of businessmen and women, as well as easy transportation of goods and services. The directives became necessary to enable ease of doing business in the state, safeguard, and guarantee free passage of goods and travellers throughout the country. To this end, no Police department, section, squad or unit should mount a roadblock, as according to law, security operatives or groups have no reason to mount a roadblock. For the avoidance of doubt, the Taxes and Levies Act Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 section 2 (2) disallow any person, including a Tax Authority from mounting a Roadblock in any part of the Federation for the purposes of collecting any Tax or Levy. The governor equally charged residents to unite against the indiscriminate felling of trees to mitigate the impact of global warming. He noted that by avoiding the indiscriminate felling of trees, Benue indigenous would promote a better appreciation of the importance of nature. There is a need for urgent efforts on a global scale to save the environment and prevent man from self-destruction. Man in his greedy and misguided exploitation has disconnected himself from nature with consequent destabilisation of the eco-balance which poses a great threat to life. Sustenance of remediation and re-awakening of world consciousness to environmental sustainability has therefore become imperative to save man from self-destruction and guarantee the connection of life on earth, he explained. According to him, it is high time man and nature got reconnected to promote environmental, security and sustainability of healthy living on earth. He underscored the economic benefits obtained from trees, in which the people of the state would be enlightened better to enable them to opt out of poverty. Economic trees can sustain a family, children's school fees and upkeep can be sustained through these means, the youth can be empowered through these means, Alia said. He commended Benue people for their support and prayers and appealed to them to remain steadfast and look forward to better days ahead.