Samuel Ortom the Benue state governor has called on the Federal Government to suspend the proposed National Population Census exercise slated to hold in May 2023.
Ortom made the call on Wednesday when he received a delegation from the Middle Belt Forum led by its President, Dr Bitrus Pogu in Makurdi, the state capital.
He noted that it is not yet ripe to conduct the exercise, saying he suspects a hidden agenda towards the May date that the Federal Government has chosen.
The Governor added that if the exercise must hold, the FG should arrange for the Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs, to return to their homes.
He said, “The FG should suspend the issue of the census because it looks like the proposed census is coming with an agenda.
“So until they are able to restore security and all our IDPs return to their ancestral homes to give all of them opportunities to be counted in their homes of birth.
“Because I understand from the National Population Commission that those to be counted must be counted in their localities”.
The state has the worst record of herdsmen attack in the country, with thousands of persons killed within a year.
Benue has over two million persons living in different IDPs camps across the state.
Barely one week ago, the dreaded killer herdsmen invaded one of the IDPs’ camps and killed at least 35 persons.