Ortom confirms suspected herdsmen’s assassination attempt on him
By Henry Iyorkase, Makurdi.
Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue state has confirmed attacked on his convoy by suspected Fulani herdsmen after inspection of his farm project few kilometres away from the state capital.
Governor Ortom, speaking to journalists on his ordeal at People’s House on Saturday, in Makurdi, disclosed that he narrowly escaped being killed by the suspected Fulani marauders at Tyo-Mu along Makurdi/Gboko road at about 11 p.m. He said that, as his convoy approached the spot there were about 15 heavily armed men, who disguise black attire upon seeing gunshots ensued.
According to the governor, it took intervention of security men on the convoy who instantly repelled them. He recalled: “while the exchange of gunfire between my security outfit was in progress, I took race for safety outside the convoy and ran away from the scene until the situation was brought under control and consequently they fled to unknown destination.
The governor further lamented that the attack came a few days after Miyyeti Allah Kautal Hore, another pan-cultural Fulani Organisation singled him out for elimination based on the intelligence reports gathered.
Ortom insists that those plotting to have him killed would never succeed. He said: “As far as I am concerned, no Fulani herdsman has the capacity to take my life. So long as my God liveth, nobody would be permitted to kill me because I always stand on the truth in the course of presiding over my people.
According to him “my grouse with Fulani herdsmen had been over ranching and prohibition law. Since the law came to effect in 2007, there have been series of intimidation, stressing that no amount of pressure would compel him to repealed the law against the wish of his people, no matter the consequences. He also expressed his determination to report the leadership of Mitte Allah Kautal Hore to the presidency and security chiefs over allowing them to go about freely with security men attached to them against the interest of Nigerians.