👤 By Abdul Tukur
A group of lawmakers said to be loyal to a senator close to President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday launched an impeachment plan that may help remove the Benue State Governor from office.
Samuel Ortom, who has been vocal in speaking out over the killing of innocent civilians by suspected herdsmen, defected from the All Progressives Congress, APC, to the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, last week Wednesday.
Before his move to the PDP, Governor Ortom who has fallen out with George Akume, a former governor and now Senator in the state, said he was given a “red card” by the APC.
Despite attempt to resolve the issue, protesters took to the Government House, Makurdi demanding that Mr Ortom, who was due to hold meetings with National leaders of the party, was to not to return to the ruling party.
Sensing the weight of the threat, the Governor made the decision to resign in front of 22 Local government and the 13 local government chairmen, saying “I have formally resigned from the APC.”
It seems that the decision the Governor took might have peeved off those who gave him the “red card” and made him join “another football club.”
Following his move to the opposition party, Adams Oshiomhole the chairman of the APC who had previously praised Governor Ortom of doing well, castigated and accused him of having “complicated, by his own actions and poor judgement, the security situation in the state.”
Responding, the Governor accused Comrade Oshiomhole, a former leader of a trade union of double speaking.
“On July 19, 2018, the National Chairman of the APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole poured encomiums on Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom. Oshiomhole was addressing journalists at the party’s secretariat in Abuja shortly after his meeting with Ortom whom he described as one of the star performers of the APC.
“He also described Ortom as an honourable man. Oshiomhole went further to state that the party would do everything to keep the Benue State governor within its fold like a highly valued diamond and not let him defect to another party, Governor Ortom’s Chief Press Secretary, Terver Akase said.
Mr Akase added: “The APC National Chairman was right when he commended Ortom over his performance in the last three years. Oshiomhole’s commendation of the governor was in agreement with the unanimous endorsement the Benue State chapter of the APC gave him during its state congress recently.”
Governor Ortom’s move to the PDP comes days after 37 members of the House of Representative decamped from the APC.
Sources told DENISAURUS News this are troubling times for the ruling party as more lawmakers and Governors are expected to leave the APC.
The Presidency has reacted to the defection by trying to prevent sitting in the National Assembly on Tuesday.
Sources at the NASS Senate confirmed that the agitated Presidency used the Nigerian Police Force to detain the Senate President Bukola Saraki and agents from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to hold his Deputy, Ike Ekweremadu so as to prevent both from sitting because “some people wanted to prevent people from decamping.”
The eventual aim was to lead an impeachment proceeding against both men. The plan failed.
Similarly, today, Adanyi Benjamin, Terhemba Chabo, Benjamin Nungwa, Bem Mngutyo, Adams Okloho, James Okefe and Nick Eworo who are members ruling APC, forced their way into the assembly and served Governor Ortom with an impeachment notice.
According to Bemgba Iortyom, Publicity Secretary, PDP, Benue State Chapter, “the objective of this plot, we have been further informed, is to reinstate impeached Speaker, Ikyange, who we also learnt is under brief to commence impeachment proceedings against Gov. Ortom, as soon as he is reinstated, this being a counter-offensive move of Senator Akume in his ongoing feud with the Benue governor.”
Senator Akume, an ally of President Buhari is said to have led the security forces to the assembly complex to help the eight lawmakers achieve their aim of removing the Governor.
However, those who served the impeachment notice despite an objection from the Makurdi High Court against it, will be outnumbered by the remaining 23 members of the House who stand in support of the Governor, this paper can reveal.
We reached out to Senator Akume for comment. So far, no word back.
Meanwhile DENISAURUS News understands that the Speaker of the Kano State House of Assembly, Yusuf Abdullahi Atta, has been impeached.
Honourable Ata whose impeachment was instigated by Labaran Abdul Madari from Warawa constituency was replaced with Kabiru Alhassan Rurum, a former Speaker of the house.