Ortom: Akume masterminded avoidable challenges in my administration

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Nigerian Concord Newspaper

Benue state governor, Mr. Samuel Ortom, this morning said that a former governor of the state who is also representing Zone B at the National Assembly, Senator George Akume, was behind all the avoidable challenges that affected his administration at its early stage.

Governor Ortom made this known today in a 2 hour interactive/ Phone in program which was aired by Harvest FM.

According to the governor, he is not contesting against his APC counterpart, Emmanuel Jime, but his estranged godfather, Senator Akume, whom he attributed the problems which he faced before he left the APC to.

His words: “I am not contesting with Jime, I am contesting against Akume who masterminded the avoidable challenges that greeted my administration at it’s earlier stage until my defection to PDP where things have normalised”

The governor pressed further that Emmanuel Jime, the APC governorship candidate, is a stooge that is being maneuvered by Senator Akume to achieve his personal desires.

When asked if it will be possible for him to work with other candidates that are contesting against him if given the mandate, Governor Ortom said: ” Yes, I will. My administration has been open to public receipt of ideas. After the primaries, all the aspirants came together to support me and we are working together. If elected, I will call them together and we shall harmonise on our blue prints, and those whose ideas are superior to mine will be fused into my white paper for a greater benue.

” My blue print is titled, a collective vision for a greater Benue, any positive idea is welcomed”

Asked by the anchor of the programme to convince the public on why he thinks he are ia best and what has given him the confidence in victory ahead of polls this 2019, the governor said: “I have been tested, I have gone out to interact with the people and the support is marvelous, the people have promised to work with me.

“If by the grace of God I’m given the mandate again, i will consolidate on the security approaches to ensure our people are safe. Education has always been our priority, and on health, we will work tirelessly to ensure we have a healthy community where productivity will be increased.

Meanwhile, a caller on Radio programme took a swipe at the Director General of the Jime/Ode Campaign, Chief Dr. Jacob Tilley Gyado, for his failure to complete a road project after collecting huge sums of money.

The caller who identified himself as Mr. Armstrong called on the Governor to compel Dr. Gyado to complete work on the Ge – Agbeede – Anshagba road contract which was awarded to him by the Suswam administration and which he paid him to complete.

Mr Armstrong lamented that failure to complete the road has impacted negatively on the economy of the area as orange farmers are unable to evacuate their produce to the relevant markets.

He expressed regret that, rather than discharge this important responsibility to the people, Senator Gyado is busy criticizing Ortom at campaign rallies round the state.

The caller suggested that the contractor should be handed over to relevant agencies for prosecution if he fails to complete the project.

He stressed that Senator Gyado’s action amounted to trampling upon and flagrant disregard on the memories and legacies of Governor Aper Aku of blessed memory since the road passes through his village.

In his response, Governor Ortom stated that he has directed the Ministry of Works, Transport and Energy to write a letter to Senator Gyado to complete the road forthwith or face sanctions in accordance with the law.

The Governor expressed regret that elders like Dr Gyado do not mean well for Benue people. He called on the people of the state to take note of such people and the company they keep.

The Governor also took time to elaborately mention some of his achievements since the inception of his adminstration to cut across agriculture in form of fertilizer subsidy, provision of other Agricultural inputs to Farmers, priority focus on education with the renovation of schools cut across local governments with issuance of scholarship to Benue students, the health sector with first class attention to school of nursing and other health outfits within benue and many other areas.

On the issue of local government staff, Ortom said: “I have directed that Local government staff who were genuinely employed in 2011 but were illegally sacked by my former Adviser on Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Hon. Titus Zam, should be reinstated immediately and they are being reinstated”