O ye Benue, peace is priceless, cherish it :)
Benue runs in my blood, but my long years on the Plateau has made me develop a strong emotional attachment to the place and has also taught me a few lessons i wish to share with my Benue folks today.
Been born and bred in Jos city of Plateau state, I’ve witnessed the highs and the lows of the state, its peaceful phase and conflict phase, and also lived through the state’s natural cold climate and its occasional warmth. I’ve also watched the state degenerate from occupying the status of the most peaceful state in the country to being amongst one of the most insecure states in the country at one point.
Over the years, I’ve seen lives and properties lost to different forms of crises, people displaced from their homes, children turned orphans, parents lose their children, the blood tasty taking the lives of their fellow country men, all due to the lack of forgiveness stemming from political, religious, and ethnic differences/conflicts in the state. Thanks to God, the search for peaceful co-existence has not eluded the state as the conflict management/resolution efforts and the peace building strategies are yielding good fruits.
The focal point of sharing this story is for my Benue folks to learn from the Plateau experience and cherish the untainted long existing peace the state has enjoyed since its inception hitherto. We don’t have to lose what we have before we know its value. We must learn to hold dear to hearts, maintain and sustain the peace in Benue state. Crisis of ethnic, religious or political causes such as the ones that happened in Jos, Kaduna, Bauchi and some other states of Nigeria are not palatable experiences.
Truly, PEACE is priceless. Unlike the Benue flood disaster that happened some time back, social conflict is not a natural disaster, it is man made and occurs by our making, hence inevitable by the decisions we choose to make today, both individually and collectively.
Viva Benue State!