The Governor of Benue State, Samuel Ortom, has lambasted President Muhammadu Buhari over his silence in the face of the incessant incidences of clashes between Fulani herdsmen and other Nigerians in different parts of the country and his failure to call them to order.
Ortom who frowned at Buhari’s non-challant attitude to the raging crisis, said he should be the
“President of Nigeria not the President of the Fulani tribe where he hails from”.
Ortom, who spoke on Wednesday while addressing journalists at the Government House in Makurdi shortly after recovering from COVID-19, said Buhari should uphold the pledge he made in 2015 of belonging to every Nigerian irrespective of tribe or religion and should serve the interest of all Nigerians instead of just one ethnic group.
He urged Buhari to act fast and call the criminal herdsmen to order and realise that no “Nigerian is a second class citizen or slave to the Fulani people.”
Ortom wondered why Buhari and the presidency choose to remain silent whenever herdsmen kill and maim other Nigerians but is quick to order the arrest of persons who resist the criminal activities of the killer herdsmen.
“When I talk, I was being castigated, I was being vilified, nothing bad that was not said against me, I am this and that but the reality is here and it is not just happening in Benue State today, it is happening in the entire country,” Ortom said
“Why is the Federal Government being silent about these Fulani herdsmen? When will Federal Government come out and criticise and arrest herdsmen carrying AK-47?
“When are they going to do that? Are we second-class citizens in this country? Why is the Fulani men superior to a Tiv man?
“I am not their slave, a Benue man is not a slave to any Fulani man in this country.
“We stand for justice, equity and fairness. Whatever is happening to a Fulani man should also happen to a Tiv man.
“That was why I called the Federal Government to licence me and many others to have guns, to have AK-47 too. Because if I have my AK-47 and a Fulani man is coming there, he knows that I have and he has, then we can fight each other.
“But you can’t disarm me and arm a Fulani man. This is not right, the Federal Government is biased, it is unfair. The failure in security is caused by Federal Government.
“Mr President, in case you are listening to me, I want you to know that your people, Nigerians, you promised Nigerians that you will be fair to all.
“You said that you will be for everybody and for nobody, and now it will appear that you are for Fulani people because nothing is coming from you to give the people confidence that you are their President.
“You are the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, you are not the President of Fulani. You are the President of everybody and I owe you a duty as a stakeholder in this nation to let you know that what is going on is wrong and this has the potential of dividing this country which will not be in the interest of anyone; some of us believe in the unity of this country.
“Mr President, if some people are deceiving you that all is well, it is not well with us in Benue State and what I can hear from other states, it is not well with Nigeria today, you must act fast before it is late.”
Join the conversation
INVESTIGATION… Ten years after, communities count losses as AfDB, Cross River govt abandon road project
Ten years after the Cross River State government and African Development Bank (AFDB) jointly awarded the Yahe-Wanokom-Wanikade-Benue border road for...
INVESTIGATION….N.3bn down the drain: Why water projects for Enugu communities don’t work
In this concluding part, ARINZE CHIJIOKE talks about some of the projects that are serving the people and how various WASH programmes have failed to tackle...
INVESTIGATION…PARKVIEW ESTATE: Exclusive images of how billionaire property developer incurred Lagos govt‘s anger
Many have seen the demolished building, but not many know the circumstances that led to the teardown of the about...
INVESTIGATION… N.3bn down the drain, as Enugu communities suffer from dry taps
In November 2020, three organizations and the Enugu State government celebrated the completion of N300 million worth of projects that were expected...
INVESTIGATION… How herdsmen crisis compounds woes of already deprived Ogun communities
Earlier in January, the Nigerian media space was awash with reports of violence between herders and farmers across the country....