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I am still in APC – Gov. Ortom makes U-turn



The Governor of Benue State, Samuel Ortom , has recanted his earlier declaration suggesting that he has left the All Progressives Congress .He said he was still a member of the APC and was impressed with the intervention of the national leadership of the party .

The governor said that he was prepared to give the party the benefit of the doubt .
Ortom made his new position known while speaking to journalists after a closed -door meeting with the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress , Adams Oshiomhole , and other members of the APC National Working Committee , at the party National Secretariat, in Abuja , on Thursday .

He had earlier announced his decision to leave the party which he compared to a football pitch at a public function held in Makurdi , the Benue State capital, on Monday .

Ortom however announced a reversal of his decision after Thursday ’ s meeting . According to him , it was the Benue State chapter of the APC that gave him “ a red card ” but that the national leadership had nullified it .

The governor said , “ It was the Benue APC that gave me a red card not the national APC and I took ( it ) that it was enough to make myself available out of the pitch, but the leadership of the party told me that the decision of the party leadership at the national level is superior to that of any individual or group of people and I think that is good enough .

“ They have spoken to him ( Senator George Akume ); they have spoken to me and the state stakeholders are going to be spoken to and that ’ s where I belong . We have not concluded the matter, it ’ s an ongoing process . I always stand for peace , and I always want peace to prevail , that ’ s what I call for.

“ I appreciate the intervention of the party’ s leadership and I hope that we will be able to resolve the matter of differences . I am here in the APC . I am a member of the APC , I am still flying the flag of the APC , I only said I was given a red card but I have been corrected by the national secretariat . ”

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He is going nowhere – Oshiomhole

Also speaking at the event , Oshiomhole said the APC did not keep “ red cards ” in its cupboard and as such , it could not give what it did not have.
The APC national chairman admitted that there could be legitimate basis for disagreements in some state chapters of the party , which his administration was determined to look into in order to resolve them .

He explained that the issues in the Benue chapter of the party were not intractable to an extent that a solution could not be found .

Oshiomhole said , “ Senator ( George ) Akume is a very respected leader of the party, a former governor and a current senator , he will recognise the need for peace and we have what it takes to make peace .

“ In Benue , we are going for a win -win solution . Governor Ortom is not going anywhere , he is a very prominent member of our party , and we appreciate his leadership in Benue . We will do everything possible to help those who have issues to have those issues resolved .

“ The Peoples Democratic Party that is hovering round must know that it is only people without honour that will vomit in the morning and convert it to lunch in the afternoon .

“ People like Ortom can ’ t leave the PDP three and half years ago with his eyes open and two , three years later because of some tension , is thinking of returning.

“ He is a man of honour and he knows that once you move one step forward , you will want to take the second step to consolidate the first step , that ’ s the way to go .

“ Rest assured that the PDP can go and do whatever they want to do, but it won ’ t change the situation and the minds of those who are convinced in building the future . ”

Also , the North- Central National Vice -chairman of APC , Mr . Suleiman Wambai , said Ortom would not leave the party.

Wambai , who stated this in an interview with journalists in Lafia on Thursday , said , “ We saw reports in various media that the governor said he was given a red card , so we have already taken a proactive step . Our able national chairman had already invited the governor and other interested parties from Benue State with the aim of resolving the matter. ”

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We didn ’ t issue red card to Ortom – Benue APC

Also , the Benue State chapter of the APC , on Thursday , said that , at no point did the party issued

a red card to Ortom .

The party said that it rather , at its last state congress in Makurdi , endorsed Ortom , and the leader of the party in the state , Akume , for another term in office .
The Benue APC , in a statement by its Director of Publicity , Peterhot Apeh , stated that the endorsement of the governor and leader of the party was meant to further unite the party in the state and provide a stable political atmosphere for the governor and Akume .

Apeh explained that , in return for the endorsement, the APC in the state demanded from the governor on behalf of the people , improved welfare and good governance .

But in a related development, Ortom on Thursday raised the alarm of plans by some persons to launch smear campaigns against him .

In the statement by his Chief Press Secretary , Terver Akase , Ortom noted that the plans were part of a grand conspiracy between some politicians in Benue State and their collaborators in Abuja.

He stated , “ The organised attacks which will be based on blatant falsehood are aimed at damaging the good and towering reputation of the governor to the political advantage of the selfish individuals .

“ Those behind the plot whose objectives include perpetual subjugation in all spheres are not comfortable with the courageous stand of Governor Ortom on major issues in favour of the majority of Benue people . They have therefore chosen to demonise him . ”

The governor reassured the people of the state that the fresh plans would fail , just like all the others , because he had no skeleton in his cupboard .