Politics

April 20, 2022

2023: Why Idoma tribe may not produce next Benue Governor – Middle Belt group

By Peter Duru, Makurdi

The Middle Belt Movement for Justice and Peace has said it would be difficult for the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to cede its governorship ticket to the Idoma speaking people of Benue South district unless the people of the district lobby all the major political parties in the state to zone the position to that part of the state.

The Convener of MBMJP, Comrade Joe Bukka in an interview Tuesday in Makurdi stated that an Idoma Governor in 2023 was achievable for the first time in 46 years only if the advocates of power shift from the district took their campaigns to the major political parties in the state and convince them to field candidates of Idoma extraction for the position of Governor.

Bukka said “it is when that is done that anyone can be assured that PDP would cede that position to the Benue South district. Outside that, we do not see the PDP taking that risks.

“We saw a recent statement by the Benue Rebirth Movement, BRM, which tended to portray Governor Samuel Ortom as one who was not down with the zoning of the governorship position to Benue South.

“That certainly cannot be the true, it is uncharitable to make such allegation against the Governor especially if you are conversant with the permutations in Benue politics. Rather the Governor should be commended for saying the truth about power shift to Benue South.

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“It is not lost on close observers of Benue politics that the majority Tiv tribe in the state have this sentimental attachment to the governorship position in the state and to have them let go of it will take a lot of persuasion which should also involve the major political parties in the state.

“If the Tivs are convinced to let go of that position, all the leading political parties in the state must also be convinced to cede the position to that part of the state. Anything short of that would spell doom for any political party that zones its position to the Idoma speaking people thereby creating an easy victory for any party that gives its ticket to a Tiv candidate.

“That is the truth about Benue politics, it is simply beyond Governor Ortom, the agitation for power shift must be taken beyond PDP because Governor cannot do it all alone. Former Governors Akume and Suswam could not achieve it and Ortom cannot singlehandedly achieve it also. If he tries to push it PDP will loss woefully in the elections.

“So we advise the BRM to desist from finding faults but move aggressively to convince the major political parties in the state to zone the governorship position to Benue South. If that is achieved Governor Ortom who has always insisted on equity, fairness and justice will give his 100 percent support to the emergence of an Idoma candidate in the PDP.

“That remains the only guarantee to have a Governor of Idoma extraction in Benue state. So any attempt to blame Governor Ortom on the matter may simply be a move to give the dog a bad name in order to hang it.”

Vanguard News Nigeria