Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
The Benue State government has described the verbal attack on the state governor, Samuel Ortom by the Minister of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs, Sen. George Akume and the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Emmanuel Jime as unfortunate.
Our correspondent gathered that Akume had, during a reception in his honor after his inauguration in Abuja, stated that he single-handedly made Ortom governor and not the Holy Spirit as he claims.
Jime, on the other hand, was said to have, heaped unprintable insults on the Governor, calling him an uneducated man and alleged that the 2019 governorship election was rigged.
But in a swift reaction, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Terver Akase said the utterances of the Benue APC leader and its governorship candidate was quite unfortunate.
“Senator Akume declared again that he single-handedly determined who became Governor of the state in 2015, and castigated Governor Ortom for always claiming that God made him Governor.
Akase who posited that it was not the first time that Senator Akume would make such a blasphemous statement recalled that he had made a similar claim during the valedictory session of the 8th Senate.
“On Jime’s claim of a stolen mandate, we advise the APC flag bearer to use the ongoing sitting of the governorship election tribunal to state his case.
“For a man who aspired to lead the state, Jime’s attacks on the person of the Governor are not only unfortunate but also smack of desperation and lack of respect for the same office he sought to occupy.
“Benue people know that APC attempted to manipulate the 2019 election in the state but could not match the overwhelming resolve of majority of the voters who said that Governor Ortom must return for a second term.
Ortom’s image maker noted that the antics of APC leadership in Benue State are obviously targeted at sustaining their support base with rhetorics and claims of a mandate that was neither given them nor stolen.
“Governor Ortom has chosen not to join issues with Senator Akume any longer. It is the considered decision of the Governor that politics is over and now it is time for governance.
“What Benue people expect at this time is that irrespective of party differences, leaders of the state should pull together ideas and resources to drive development.
“Senator Akume is now a Minister of the Federal Republic and Governor Ortom has already expressed his willingness to collaborate with the Minister to fast-track development for the benefit of Benue people,” the statement read in part.