Enemies of PDP Sponsoring Media Attacks Against Ortom
A group of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP members in Benue has risen in defence of the leader of the party in the state and former Governor, Chief Samuel Ortom and warned those scheming to cause dissaffection in the party that their plot will meet stiff opposition.
In a statement signed by its Coordinator Samuel Akough and 7 other key members, the group raised the alarm that some individuals have been sponsoring media attacks against the former governor to oust him from the party and take over its structures.
The statement reads:
“It has come to our attention as Concerned PDP Members that one faceless group which calls itself “Benue PDP Foundation Group” has made unfounded accusations against the former Governor of Benue State and Leader of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state, Chief Samuel Ortom. The outing of the nondescript group is another poor job by paid agents who have been mobilized by some individuals who are threatened by the high political profile of Chief Ortom and are desperate to pull him down by all means.
“It must first be established that the character who signed the said press statement and could not even spell his name correctly “Mchael Aberagi” is not in the membership register of our great party in any Ward of Benue State.
“We hasten to challenge the faces behind the hood of the group (their sponsors) to step forward and make their claims instead of using mercenaries to attack Chief Ortom. The former Governor is a man of integrity and honour who stands by his convictions and speaks his mind on issues, no matter who is involved. We are confident in him as the Leader of our great party and we will continue to stand with him!
“We are well aware of clandestine moves by some individuals who are planning to takeover the structures of the party. They calculate that the only way their plot can succeed is to chase Chief Ortom out of the party, hence their resort to cheap blackmail, propaganda and manipulation.
“We hasten to state that the plan of the said individuals is dead on arrival! The soul of the PDP is not up for sale to the highest bidder!
“Another strong factor that is responsible for the sponsored media attacks against the Leader of PDP in Benue State is the party’s Congresses which are fast approaching. The motive of the sponsors of the campaign of calumny against Chief Ortom is to hijack the party congresses and install their stooges. This plan too will be stoutly resisted by we true members of the party.
“The hired group also blamed Chief Ortom for supporting the presidential candidate of Labour Party, Mr Peter Obi, a move they attributed to the loss of PDP in last year’s elections in the state. This too is a fat lie. Long before the 2023 elections, Benue people pointedly told the PDP presidential candidate that he would be rejected in the state owing to his reckless utterances on the killing of hundreds of innocent people of the state by Fulani herders. Chief Ortom who is a man of integrity and has the fear of God in him,
only toed the line of his people who had also decided that the President of Nigeria in 2023 should come from the Southern part of the country.
“Governor Ortom and his colleagues in the G-5 stood firmly on the need for a Southern President and they succeeded. The five patriotic governors stood for equity, fairness and justice. Chief Ortom’s recent statement in Port Harcourt on behalf of the G-5 was in line with the same stand that the South has to retain the seat of President for 8 years and it is only right and fair that the current occupant of the seat President Bola Tinubu should be accorded that same opportunity to serve two terms as his predecessor.
“Chief Ortom has always been a committed member of the PDP and has worked tirelessly over the years in different capacities to promote values and mission of the party. Any insinuation to the contrary is a deliberate distortion of the truth.
“We equally want to correct the skewed narrative by the group “that since 1999, this is the first time our party in the state has performed so dismally as witnessed in the 2023 general elections.” This confirms our earlier statement that the writer of that piece is not a member our party PDP. If he were a member of the party, he would have known that in 2015, Chief Samuel Ortom and nearly all other candidates of All Progressives Congress, APC at that time defeated our party in an unprecedented manner.
“PDP looked a shadow of its former self in the state after the 2015 elections until 2018 when Governor Ortom returned to the party and blew life into it. To now level all manner of accusations against him simply to paint him in dark colours is not only mischievous but also unfortunate and unacceptable!
“Chief Samuel Ortom has a long-standing record of dedication and service to the people of Benue State. Throughout his two tenures as Governor, he worked tirelessly to address the various challenges facing the state and its citizens. The network of roads that Governor Ortom constructed in Makurdi, Gboko and other parts of the state are unprecedented. Aside building ultramodern palaces for the two paramount rulers in the state, Governor Ortom also built many other infrastructure in education, health, lands, housing etc.
“The Ortom administration inherited many months of unpaid salaries, pensions and gratuity running into multi billions, but he was able to deplete the backlog and reduce it to a minimal level before he exited office. Chief Ortom is on record to have paid the longest uninterrupted stretch of salaries in the recent history of Benue State between January 2018 and the first quarter of 2023, despite the two major recessions that Nigeria went into and COVID-19 in year 2020.
“We urge the public to see through the misleading statement of the sponsored group. Their irresponsible conduct has no place in our democratic process, and we call on the leadership of the PDP at the state and national levels to disregard the tissue of rascality for what it is.