8.4 C
New York
Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Excuses, Blame Game Won’t Save You, Moro Slams Gov Ortom

Published:

LATEST NEWS

- Advertisement -

The immediate past Minister of Interior, Comrade Abba Moro, has
declared that despite efforts by the Samuel Ortom-led All Progressives
Congress (APC) government in Benue State to silence him, he would
continue to remain a potent voice in the state to entrench good
governance.

Is Buhari Taking Nigeria For Granted?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Moro, a staunch member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), made the
declaration in a statement he personally signed and issued on Thursday
in Abuja, in reaction to the article of Governor Ortom’s media aide,
Tahav Agerzua, captioned: “Innocent blood haunts Abba Moro daily”.

The said piece was written as a response to Moro’s critical remarks on
the industrial action by the organized labour in Benue State.

Benue workers under the auspices of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC)
had penultimate week, embarked on a strike action to demand the
payment of the backlog of salaries owed them by the state government.

Moro who has been a frontline critic of the current Benue State
government had asked Ortom to stop lamenting and pay the workers their
entitlements. He had also insisted that the governor has not done any
meaningful project, in spite of the huge amount of money that has
accrued to the state since Ortom assumed office in 2015.

“My attention has drawn to the vituperation, tirades and diatribes
from the government of Benue State that trailed my innocuous query of
the handling of governance in Makurdi that is hurting the Benue people
against the backdrop of the strike called by the Benue State chapter
of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) and its affiliate unions over
their unpaid salaries and allowances and pension arrears. This is not
surprising because it has become the trade mark of the Benue State
government and its officials to avoid answering pertinent questions on
misgovernment in Markudi to go after perceived opponents of
government. It is unfortunate that people like Tahav Agerzua around
Governor Ortom continue to mislead him into believing that things are
well even when people wallow in misery as a result of the negatives of
government’s poor policy thrusts.

“Rather than address germane questions being asked, the Agerzuas will
quickly point to ‘frustration’, ‘mischief’ and ‘partisanship’ as the
reasons for the concern being expressed over the deteriorating state
of governance in Markudi. Governor Ortom and the APC campaigned on the
change mantra. The governor and the APC hoodwinked the Benue people
into believing that they possessed answers to the many problems that
Benue State faced. They got elected in 2015. Two years on, can Benue
State be said to be any better off than it was when Samuel Ortom took
over in 2015?” Moro asked.

Continuing, he added: “Today, the Benue State government is still
verifying the status of Benue State workers in local governments, an
exercise for which funds were approved and released to the committee
headed by the Speaker of the Benue State House of Assembly at the
inception of this administration. Why is the exercise of staff, ghost
worker verification an endless, bottomless pit? In a rare act of
statesmanship and concern for Nigerian workers, President Buhari
requested all States to submit to him salary, allowance and pension
arrear liabilities. Benue State like other States submitted her
claims. Monies were released to that effect. Several bailout funds
were released subsequently to the government of Benue State. The Benue
State government took several loans. Several tranches of Paris club
refunds have been made to the government of Benue State. The Benue
State government has been receiving statutory allocations from the
Federation Accounts Allocation Committee (FAAC). The state government
generates Internal Revenue (IGR). We asked for the umpteenth time:
where have these monies taken flight to?”

According to him, “Benue State’s infrastructures are deficient and in
decay. Listing projects, including those executed by past
administrations does not answer the question of what projects that
have been executed and commissioned by this administration in Makurdi.
Truth is, the APC government in Makurdi knows absolutely nothing about
governance. As Raymond Albert Kroc rightly put it, ‘The quality of a
leader is reflected in the standards they set for themselves.’ A good
leader should be open to criticism.In the words of Winston Churchill,
two-time British Prime Minister, ‘Criticism may not be agreeable, but
it is necessary. It fulfills the same function as pain in the human
body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things’. Criticism,
according to Dr. Hendrie Weisinger, a world-renowned psychologist, is
information that will help you grow. And that is why Elbert Hubbard
said ‘The final proof of greatness lies in being able to endure
criticism without resentment’. My criticism of Ortom’s government is
out of genuine concern for the pain and agony my fellow citizens in
Benue State are going through as a result of the leadership inertia
that has taken its root in Makurdi government house. The policies of
the government in Makurdi, if what we have can be so called are
hurting Benue people. It is my position that those who are endorsing
Governor Ortom for a second term in the face of an abysmal failure do
not know what they are doing.”

He further stated that “In the mummified minds of officials of
government in Makurdi because non-payment of salaries and allowances
and pension arrears is not unique to Benue State, it is normal. Yet it
is on record that ICPC and other anti-graft agencies listed Benue
State amongst states that diverted bailout funds meant for settlement
of salaries and allowances of workers. It is on record that recently,
the Benue State House of Assembly was rocked by car contract scam
which has been a subject of investigation and sundry other sleazes in
government in Makurdi. Benue State workers are saying ‘enough is
enough’. They organized a warning strike. The internally displaced
persons, victims of the Makurdi flood organized a protest against the
diversion of relief materials by government officials. Are these Abba
Moro, partisanship, mischief? If the anti-graft government agencies
sweep these financial infractions under the carpet, history will not.

“It is no longer news that when the government of Benue State is
criticized, government officials and thugs go after the persons of
imaginary government enemies. For Abba Moro, it is the failed
Immigration Service recruitment exercise and the alleged illegal
possession of firearms over a decade ago.
“For the information of the government and its officials in Makurdi,
Comrade Abba Moro was acquitted of the case of illegal possession of
fire arms in 2009 by a court of competent jurisdiction. In the case of
the Nigeria Immigration Service recruitment exercise, it was a
laudable policy initiative that did not meet the expected curve of
results. The policy aimed at opening the space of employment to
Nigerians irrespective of tribe, religion or the so-called
‘connection’ in government. The policy did not fail, the
implementation did. I believe that history will vindicate the just and
the pure at heart. In any case, if innocent blood will haunt Abba Moro
daily, the blood of Agatu and Benue people slaughtered by Fulani
herdsmen with whom the government signed agreement for grazing will
haunt Governor Ortom hourly. And the blood of the innocent Benue
people who lost their lives to flood due to the ineptitude of
leadership of the government in Makurdi and its cosmetic attitude in
the face of a major disaster will haunt Governor Ortom by the minute.”

“If I may ask, was the government of Samuel Ortom elected to tell the
story of the Nigeria Immigration recruitment tragedy and to blame past
government for lacking in ideas of how to address the challenges of
governance? The APC and Samuel Ortom campaigned in 2015 on the change
mantra with a promise to rescue Benue State. Today, Benue State has
changed from a state full of hope to a state full of misery and total
insecurity praying for rescue. The regret of Governor Samuel Ortom on
the current situation regarding prompt payment of wages is aptly
demonstrated by the superfluous display of the Governor’s 2019 second
term bid in the midst of the misery of Benue people”, the former
minister pointed out.

Hey there! Exciting news - we've deactivated our website's comment provider to focus on more interactive channels! Join the conversation on our stories through Facebook, Twitter, and other social media pages, and let's chat, share, and connect in the best way possible!

Join our social media

For even more exclusive content!

Of The Week
CARTOON

TOP STORIES

- Advertisement -

Of The Week
CARTOON