By Bello Abdallah, Lafia.
Leaders of Fulani socio-cultural organizations rose from a meeting in Lafia, Nasarawa State yesterday with a resolution to ensure that they choose a governorship candidate for the All Progressives Congress, APC in Benue State.
National Coordinator of the pastoralists, Garus Gololo who spoke to journalists shortly after the meeting, said their decision to ensure the APC candidate in Benue State is their choice was based on their vested interest in the state.
Gololo said since the enactment of the Open Grazing Prohibition law of Benue State, their members have been denied access to the lush lands and abundant water in the state, hence their resolve to do everything to install the next governor of the state.
The Fulani groups’ spokesman disclosed that they had met with the Minister of Special Duties and Inter-Governmental Affairs, Senator George Akume soon after he was appointed as minister and they met with him three more times after the first meeting and made their decision to anoint a governorship candidate clear to him.
Gololo also disclosed that the Fulani groups have vowed to do everything within their power to ensure that Governor Ortom does not produce a successor and that only the APC aspirant who is favorably disposed to the Fulani cause will smell the party’s ticket.
He boasted that their sponsors who are highly placed individuals have assured them of billions of money to fund the 2023 governorship election in Benue, revealing that money has already been released for the purchase of nomination form for the anointed aspirant.
Gololo also stated that the first condition to be given to the APC candidate which would be put in writing in the form of an agreement is the repeal of the open grazing prohibition law.
When asked what Akume’s response was when they presented their demands to him on the choice of APC candidate, Gololo said the minister looked blank as if lost in thought but when he regained himself nodded many times in acceptance of their demands and promised to convene a meeting between key APC stakeholders from Benue and leaders of Miyetti Allah in Abuja later this week to iron out the issue of a candidate.
He went on to say that Akume was excited at the mention of the amount of money he would be given should the herders have their way to impose a candidate on the APC. Gololo added that the offer they are making is too good to be rejected by APC leaders in Benue as all of them will be handsomely rewarded.