INSECURITY: Elections May Not Hold in 2023, Ortom Says
The 2023 elections may not hold in Nigeria if insecurity in the country persists, Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State on Wednesday told newsmen after he met with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
He said the nation was sitting on a keg of gun powder without meaningful progress being made on the issue of security.
According to him, “It’s not just enough to say that one criticises the policies of the President, but when he does a good thing, it is our responsibility to team up with him to ensure that it’s done because it is when we are peaceful, when we have security that we can talk about tomorrow.
“I want to also appeal to Nigerians, 2023, yes to a politician is not far, but it’s still a long way. If we secure our country and everything is working fine, then we can talk about 2023, but with the way things are going, if we don’t secure the country, there is no way we can talk about 2023, that is why I always dismiss people who come to me to say we will contest this, we will contest that.
“For me, I want us, as leaders of this country, who have taken oath of office, let us abide by those things we have said, work together as a team, leave politics aside, leave ethnicity aside, then secure the country, Nigeria. We have no other country than Nigeria.
“Today, we cannot go to Cameroon or Senegal or any other country and claim responsibility, so my appeal to everyone is to ensure that we work together. Security matters are not just for the security agencies alone. We as people who are being led, have a responsibility, we who are leaders, have a responsibility.
“It is only when we team up that we’ll be able to surmount this challenge. But I think there shouldn’t be room for people who are creating problems for us. We have a constitution, we have laws of the land. If people are found wanting, they should be cautioned, they should be arrested, prosecuted and let the right thing be done.”
Also on Wednesday, the military said it had deployed troops to Tyo-Mu, the community where Ortom was attacked in his farm last Saturday.
Commander of the joint military security outfit in Benue State, Operation Whirl Stroke, OPWS, Major-General Adeyinka Yekini, disclosed this while conducting newsmen round the scene of the attack where five bullet shells were recovered.
Yekini said the troops were deployed to the community to intensify patrol and surveillance of the general area, noting that his troops had immediately moved in to patrol, comb and clear the area.
He said that the patrol will help check activities of the militia herdsmen and other criminal elements emerging from the forest across River Benue to unleash mayhem on people.
He said: “We are here to show you that the general area is clear of any bandits. The incident was quite unfortunate. When we were alerted, we immediately combed the area. We should not be judged by this singular assignment; we have accepted it was a security breach and we will take action.”
He disclosed that in the course of patrol, the troops discovered a makeshift camp of the armed herders which it destroyed and set ablaze.
Share your thoughts on the story with Nigerian Sketch in the comments section below.