By Peter Duru, Makurdi

The kinsmen of Governor Samuel Ortom under the aegis of Nongov Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Stakeholders have urged All Progressives Congress, APC, leaders in Benue state to prevail on federal government to establish the North Central Development Agency to cater for the needs of victims of herdsmen crisis as well as rebuild destroyed communities in the state rather than mounting sustained attacks on the Governor.

The Nongov Stakeholders were Monday in Makurdi reacting to the recent media outing of a group, the Ihyarev APC leaders, who leveled several allegations against Governor Ortom and his government but declared support for the Minister of Special Duties and Inter-Governmental Affairs, Senator George Akume who also recently took a swipe at the Governor.

The Ihyarev APC leaders had among others kicked against the Benue grazing law, blaming Governor Ortom for mismanaging the herders killings in the state as well as keeping Internally Displaced Persons in the state for political gains.

But countering the allegations Governor Ortom’s kinsmen lead by Dr. David Tsevende urged the Ihyarev APC leaders to “instead of resorting to baseless accusations against the Governor, impress on President Muhammedu Buhari to provide adequate security with a matching order to apprehend armed Fulani herdsmen and also support the implementation of the ranching laws of Benue and other States.

“They should also prevail on the President to redeem the N10billion pledged for the reconstruction, rehabilitation, and resettlement of IDPs in Benue State.”

They stakeholders also called on President Buhari to proscribe Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore and other violent Fulani socio-cultural groups and order the arrest of their leaders who had publicly accepted responsibility for the killings in Benue state.

According to them, “we find it rather worrisome that despite being tagged as the fourth deadliest terrorist group in the world, by the Global Terrorism Index, the Ihyarev APC Leaders have absolved this dangerous group of the killings in Benue State.”

They reiterate that Governor Ortom would never habour hatred for the Fulani as a tribe saying “he is only against armed Fulani militia on a mission to take over the land of his people.

“His patriotic call on the Federal Government to address the ravaging insecurity in the land, his continuous galvanization of national attention on the invasion of rural farming communities of Benue by armed Fulani militia, his refusal to surrender his people’s land to invaders as well as the enactment of the Prohibition of Open Grazing Prohibition and Ranches Establishment Law 2017, all represent the action of a true and visionary leader genuinely concerned about the welfare and security of his people as well as the unity and economic wellbeing of the country.”

While insisting that people of Ihyarev extraction had continuously benefited immensely from the Governor Ortom’s administration, the stakeholders demanded the Ihyarev APC leaders to “as a matter of urgency tender an unreserved apology to Governor Ortom for the uncharitable and negative campaign they have launched against his person.”

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