By NBF News

Former members of the House of Representatives, under the aegis of former members of House of representatives Forum, have said that the only way to permanently stop the sectarian violence in Plateau State is to prosecute those behind the mayhem.

In a statement issued in Abuja, Sunday and jointly signed by Musa Elayo, former minister of state for justice, and Emeka Nwajuba, as interim chairman and secretary respectively, the group commended the public arraignment of some alleged perpetrators of the killings in Jos, saying it was a right step in the right direction.

However, the forum reasoned that it would not yield desired result if only perpetrators of the act and not sponsors were brought to book. It noted that though the arraignment of some alleged perpetrators of the latest massacre in Dogo Nahawa and other villages in Plateau State is a welcome development, government should be more pro-active and not wait for a complete deterioration of the situation.

'Since there has been series of reports produced by various administrative and judicial panels to unravel the causes of the recurring crisis in the state, the recommendations of such reports must be implemented without further delay,' the statement counselled. The terse statement continued: 'We are pained by the ironic twist in the fate of this once beautiful city which should have been a tourist destination for people around the world but has sadly become a byword for cruelty, barbarism and man's inhumanity to man.

'While we sympathize with the victims of the recurring violence and deeply regret the wanton destruction and loss of lives in Plateau State over the years, events of the last three months have, however, proven that we cannot afford to watch idly while the future leaders of this country are hacked to death for no faults of theirs. It is important at this juncture to note that those in positions of responsibility should divest themselves of partisanship and discharge their responsibilities in accordance to their oaths of allegiance and oath of office,' they noted.

'We call on the government, as a matter of urgency, to make public all the reports of the various committees set up on the Jos crises which identified the sponsors and to prosecute the sponsors in order to serve as a strong signal to trouble makers that the era of impunity in our country is gone. Prosecuting only those who were alleged to have carried out the attacks without arresting the sponsors, in our view, will not solve the problems,' the statement added.