By Peter Duru – Makurdi
The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Benue state has alleged that the Minister of Special Duties and Inter-Governmental Affairs, Senator George Akume traded Benue state by accusing the people of killing each other and leveling several accusations on the Governor Samuel Ortom in order to secure the National Chairmanship position of the All Progressives Congress, APC.
State Chairman of the party, Sir John Ngbede who was reacting to last Monday’s media briefing by the Minister and APC stakeholders who called for emergency rule in Benue after accusing Governor Samuel Ortom of masterminding killings in the state and diverting public funds.
In a text titled Akume’s shocking betrayal of Benue people for crumbs, the PDP Chairman said, “that press conference was held as a reaction to the dramatic departure of Governor Ortom from the APC and his re-entry into the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
“Governor Ortom took along with him large numbers of APC members, sounding the death knell for Senator Akume’s political career as was to manifest in defeat at the 2019 General Elections where he sought re-election to a 4th term at the Senate.
“Three years later, there is once again massive defection of members of the APC to PDP in Benue State, leading to enormous boosting of the political fortunes of the umbrella party ahead of the 2023 General Elections.
“The promise reportedly dangled before Akume is the APC National Chairmanship which is up for contest at the party’s next convention, yet such a promise could never be taken seriously by those who know the character of the promise makers.
“However, for one as desperate as the defeated Senator who is facing inevitable political extinction, such an hollow promise is still reason enough to embark on the ill-fated project of blackmail and backstabbing against his people carried in the press conference.
“The major demand of Senator Akume in his bizzare press conference is a declaration of a State of Emergency in Benue State, which implies a dissolution of all democratic structures in the state and the foisting of a surrogate government.
“All the fabrications of figures in Senator Akume’s press conference, the grovelling praise singing of President Buhari, the demonizing of Governor Ortom, the denial of attacks on Benue people, the lack of mention of the over 1.5 million IDPs in the various camps across the state, are all targeted at getting control of power in Benue by institution of martial law where he failed through the ballot.
“This is also reminiscent of his futile attempt in 2018 to impeach Governor Ortom through a kangaroo impeachment that fell flat on its face as he could not rally a quorum of 10 members of the 30-member Assembly to execute his diabolical plan.
“The repeated allegations of pilfering of local government funds, Governor Ortom’s possession of militia outfits, and other sundry accusations are fabrications to support a personal objective of giving a dog a bad name to hang it.”
“We wish Senator Akume well on his path of self destruction. But we will counsel him to beware of the increasingly heavier price he is eager to pay for a declining share of the crumbs.”