- The Foundation for Equity and Justice on Friday, February 12, reacted to Governor Samuel Ortom's letter to President Muhammadu Buhari
- The group said Ortom plans to cause panic in Benue state and Nigeria as a whole
- FEJ said Ortom's letter to President Buhari is an insult to Nigerians' sensibilities
A group, Foundation for Equity and Justice (FEJ) has the governor of Benue state, Samuel Ortom, is now known for always stoking ethnic and religious tension.
FEJ reacted to the letter to President Muhammadu Buhari by the governor over the conflict between farmers and herders in the Benue.
In a statement signed by FEJ's secretary-general, Raymond Oralu, and seen by Legit.ng, the group said the governor, being a "herdsman" wants to monopolize cattle business in his state and would go to any length to secure that.
Oralu said Ortom's claims that Buhari is a "Fulani president" is an insult to the sensibilities of Nigerians.
Oralu further said Ortom should be held responsible for the growing conflict between farmers-herders in Benue and environs.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that Ortom had in a letter asked President Buhari to declare an emergency on Nigeria's security situation.
The governor in his letter said that those carrying out criminal attacks on Nigerian communities are foreigners.
The Benue state governor had also challenged his counterpart in Bauchi state over his remark on herdsmen carrying AK-47.
Ortom in his response described Governor Bala Mohammed statement concerning the carrying of arms by herdsmen as disappointing.
Part of the Benue governor's statement released by his spokesman read:
“Governor Ortom wonders which section of the law the Bauchi state governor cited to support herdsmen’s free movement around the country with sophisticated weapons.
“He recalls that it was the same Governor Mohammed who once said on national television that a Fulani man is a global citizen and therefore does not need a visa to come to Nigeria and that the forests belong to herdsmen.
“In reference to Governor Bala Mohammed’s comment that there are Benue people who are freely doing business in Bauchi and elsewhere, Governor Ortom states that Benue indigenes in Bauchi have been law-abiding and do not carry arms to attack their hosts, noting that Fulani, as well as many other Nigerians residing in Benue who respect laws of the land, also live peacefully with their hosts.”
Jerrywright Ukwu is a senior political/defence correspondent at Legit.ng based in Abuja. He is a graduate of the Nigerian Institute of Journalism, Lagos and the International Institute of Journalism in Abuja. He is also an active member of the Nigeria Union of Journalists. He spends his leisure-time reading history books.