- The state government said Governor Ortom did not set the DSS after Suswam
- It said, contrary to reports, it never petitioned the secret police to go after his predecessor
- However, it confirmed that a petition was made to the DSS but said it was about killer herdsmen attacks on Benue committee
The Benue State Government has denied that Governor Samuel Ortom has anything to do with the arrest of Gabriel Suswam, an ex-governor, by the Department of State Services.
Ortom’s chief press secretary Terver Akase said in a statement sent to Legit.ng that claims the arrest followed a petition by the state governor were not true.
The statement read in part: “We wish to categorically state that Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom did not write a petition which led to the arrest of former Governor of the State, Gabriel Suswam, contrary to some media reports.
"Such reports are false, misleading and mischievous."
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The statement follows claims by an aide to Suswam that he was arrested after a petition by Governor Ortom.
The government however confirmed writing a petition to the DSS against the leaders of Miyetti Allah as a result of the killings by suspected herdsmen in the state.
“The Benue State Government has written a petition against leaders of Miyetti Allah Kautal H*re and has filed a lawsuit against the group. The State Government has evidence to prove that the socio-cultural organisation is responsible for recent attacks and killing of innocent people in the state,” the government said.
“The Ortom administration will not be distracted from its commitment to get justice for victims of mindless attacks on the state.”
Legit.ng had reported that former governor of Benue Gabriel Suswam, was arrested by DSS over an alleged connection with the killings in the state.
Suswam was arrested after the incumbent Governor Samuel Ortom, allegedly petitioned the DSS over the security situation in the state.
The DSS had arrested the former governor in 2017, after it said it uncovered a large cache of arms and ammunition from a property allegedly belonging to him at number 44, Aguiyi Ironsi Way, Maitama-Abuja.
Benue Elders Speak on Herdsmen Attacks - on Legit.ng TV