…urge him to end killings in Nigeria to earn his praise
By Peter Duru, Makurdi
Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State has said he bears no personal grudge against President Muhammadu Buhari insisting that the criticism of his government is because of his failed economic policies and inability to end the ongoing killings in the country.
The Governor made the clarification while reacting to a statement credited to President Muhammadu Buhari by the Chairman on Tertiary Education in the House of Representatives, Aminu Goro during the commissioning of some projects at the Joseph Sarwuan Tarka University Makurdi.
President Buhari was quoted at the occasion to have asked Governor Ortom to endeavour to acknowledge his administration’s capital projects in Benue State rather than castigating him.
The Governor, speaking during an Independence Day Interdenominational Church service organised by the State Government in conjunction with the state chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN held at the Faith Cathedral of All Nations Evangelism Makurdi, maintained that he would not stop the criticisms until the killings were ended.
He said, “I cannot stop criticising the President when Benue people are being killed daily without the Federal Government is unable to end it. I will not stop until the killings stop.”
Governor wondered why the Buhari-led Federal Government had not disarmed Fulani herdsmen who bear sophisticated weapons and kill innocent people but had continued to deny lawful state security agencies the right to acquire arms to protect lives and property.
According to him, “I was not elected to preside over dead people and would therefore continue to strongly criticize the Federal Government as long as it fails in its constitutional role of providing security for citizens.”
While lamenting the challenges bedevilling the nation, Governor Ortom expressed confidence in the greatness of the country, stressing that there must be justice, equity and fairness for the country to continue to progress.
The Governor acknowledged the prayers of the Church and encouraged spiritual leaders to be united in providing direction for the people to overcome the challenges militating against the unity of the country.
Earlier, Archbishop Yiman Orkwar in his message with the topic “The Tripod of Justice” declared that for Nigeria to move forward as a country, there must be justice, equity and fairness warning that justice had eluded the country and if not reversed it could lead to its collapse.
In his remarks, the CAN Chairman, Benue State, Reverend Akpen Leva who commended Governor Ortom for his enormous support to the Church urged Nigerians not to lose hope in the country as God was still on the throne.
Dignitaries at the service included the Speaker of the Benue State House of Assembly and PDP Governorship candidate, Titus Uba, Chief Judge of the State, Justice Aondover Kakaan, President of the Customary Court of Appeal, Justice Cosmas Idye as well as members of the State Executive and Security Councils.