PRESIDENT BUHARI RECEIVES BENUE GOV 1 . President Muhammadu Buhari receives The Governor of Benue, Mr samuel Ortom at the State House in Abuja. PHOTO; SUNDAY AGHAEZE. JAN 9 2018
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Insecurity: We are sitting on a keg of gunpowder — Benue Governor

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By Ajuma Edwina Ameh

Benue Governor Samuel Ortom says the attempted assassination he narrowly escaped is an indication that Nigeria is sitting on a keg of gunpowder.

He is also dismissive of insinuations in some quarters that he “stage-managed” the attack on his convoy by gunmen suspected to be herdsmen.

“We are sitting on a keg of gunpowder and everybody is not in doubt in Nigeria today about the security situation.

“Without security there can be no meaningful progress and so it is important to put heads together,” Ortom said.

Persecondnews recalls that Ortom was reportedly ambushed by the suspected herdsmen on Tyo-MU Makurdi/Gboko road on March 20.

According to Ortom, he escaped by the whiskers after herdsmen numbering about 15 trailed him to his farm.

The governor prayed that his worst enemies would not experience the attack, saying what would he gain from claiming what did not happen.

Speaking to State House correspondents after meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, he said he had come to thank the president for condemning the attack and ordering security agencies to carry out a “thorough and transparent investigation”.

“I want to advise, like I said earlier, Mr. President did advise when he was condemning the attack on me, and pleaded with Nigerians that they should not politicise this matter.

” I want to appeal, I want to beg everyone that we should not politicise the issue of attempted assassination on myself.

“If a governor is attacked, then it is an attack on all. And I appreciate my colleagues the government’s irrespective of party affiliation, the chairman of our Governance Forum, the chairman of northern governors governors forum, the Chairman of Southern governors forum, the chairman of PDP governors forum, the Chairman of APC governors forum.

“All of them by way of call or text messages or press statement, they have communicated to me condemning this attack.

“That is how it should be. We should know when to play politics and we should know when to team up together to work as a team to salvage the country. That is what I’m saying.

“Those who are saying that, what benefit do I have to come up and say that I was attacked? Ortom asked rhetorically.

Ortom urged Nigerians to downplay politics when it comes to the issue of security, adding “all hands must be on deck to tackle the menace.”

“I am aware that the security challenges in our country today are not about the President or we governors, they are about every citizen of this country so we must work together to surmount this.

“I also want Nigerians to know, especially those who are responsible for making inflammatory statements.

“Let’s do the things that are lawful, protect the provisions of the constitution of the Federal republic of Nigeria so that everybody will be secured, let there be equity, fairness and justice. That is what I stand for,” the governor stressed.

Ortom advised Nigerians not to allow political ambition toward the 2023 election to jeopardise the peace and unity of the country.

 

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