The Benue State Government announced on Wednesday that it had commenced the evacuation of Benue State students at the Federal University, Wukari in Taraba.
The evacuation followed the closure of the university after the alleged killing of two Benue students in the institution on July 30 by people suspected to be members of the Jukun militia.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that hundreds of people have been killed over the years in recurring communal clashes between ethnic Jukun and Tivs in the agricultural belt of Northern Nigeria.
The bloody conflict has taken its toll on the two ethnic groups with many lives lost and property estimated at millions of naira destroyed.
Speaking in a telephone interview with a NAN correspondent in Makurdi on Wednesday, the Benue Commissioner for Education, Prof. Dennis Ityavyar, said the evacuation of the students was due to the closure of the university.
He said that relevant security operatives and the government of Taraba had been notified about the evacuation.
Ityavyar said that the Benue Government was hopeful that the Taraba Government would provide adequate security for all Benue citizens, including students residing in Taraba.
He said the Benue Government had since started making arrangements to provide for the needs of Benue students affected by the crisis.
“The Government of Benue State has contacted the Government of Taraba State, police commissioner, the army and other security formations in Taraba State to ensure the safety of Benue State indigenes in Taraba State.
The commissioner appealed to Taraba indigenes schooling in Benue to remain calm, assuring that the Benue Government was on top of the situation to ensure safety for everyone.
“There should be no panic moment (sic) of students of Taraba State origin who are schooling in Benue State. We are on top of the situation,” he stated.
Benue and Taraba Governments have held series of meetings over the years to find a lasting solution to the crisis but the killings have not abated.