PDP scampers to save Ortom

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Governor Samuel Ortom now PDP governor

Opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has hurried to Makurdi, Benue state capital, on a solidarity visit to Gov. Samuel Ortom of Benue where it described threats to impeach him as illegal.

The party said it stood by the governor who defected from ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) to PDP last week.

The PDP said it was in Benue to support the governor and welcome him back to the PDP family.

Earlier in the year, some governors of PDP paid solidarity visits to the governor over what the clashes between farmers and herders.

PDP Governor Nysome Wike of Rivers state donated money to Ortom when he visited, an act viewed as attempt to woo the embattled governor to the opposition party.

The defection of Ortom is not without consequences as some lawmakers has vowed of the national ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) have vowed to oust him.

PDP National Chairman Uche Secondus who on Wednesday led some PDP governors and senators on the visit, met with Ortom at the Government House in Makurdi.

Secondus described the impeachment plot initiated by eight members of the Benue legislature as “an act of illegality”, and urged Nigerians to rise against it.

“The House has 30 members; eight members cannot form a quorum to seat, much less plot an impeachment process,” he said.

He assured him that the PDP would stand by him, urging him to ignore recent allegations hurled at him by people angry that he had left the All Progressives Congress.

Gov. Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa, who spoke on behalf of the governors, assured Ortom of his colleagues’ support in his trying times.

Dickson described the impeachment notice to Ortom by a minority group at the Benue State House of Assembly as “nonsense”, vowing that the governors would never allow it.

“Democracy and the rule of law must be given the proper respect in Nigeria,” he said.

He decried the spate of killings of innocent Nigerians in different parts of the country, and urged the federal government to tackle the phenomenon.

Dickson called on the people of Benue to stand by their governor, especially now that he was passing through a trying moment.

Responding, Ortom described himself as “a prodigal son”, and pleaded that PDP should fully receive him back into its fold.

He described PDP as his home, saying that he had returned to his family, given that he was no longer comfortable in APC.

He charged the Federal Government to respect democratic norms and principle, saying that he would resist any attempt by any agency of government or persons to intimidate him.

The governor decried the withdrawal of police personnel from the Internally Displaced Persons camps in the state, and described the action as “very dangerous”.

Also speaking, the state chairman of PDP, Mr John Ngbede, admonished the governor to remain firm and not be intimated, saying that the PDP family was solidly behind him in his travails.


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