No amount of intimidation can force my administration to repeal ranching law – Ortom

GOVERNOR Samuel Ortom of Benue State says no amount of intimidation can compel his administration to repeal or reverse the ranching law.

Ortom said this at a press briefing held at the state capital Makurdi on Saturday while narrating his ordeal in the hands of gunmen who planned to assassinate him.

He said that the ranching law of the state would not be repealed for any reason, stressing that no intimidation could force his administration to reverse the decision of Benue people against open grazing.

In the wake of attacks and killings of innocent people by Fulani herders, Benue State House of Assembly, in 2017, passed the ranching law prohibiting open grazing. This has created a number of problems for Ortom, resulting intimidations and more killings in the state.

Read Also: Hold FG responsible if anything happens to Ortom – Wike

Ortom disclosed that he was inspecting his farm when armed herders, dressed in black, opened fire on him and his security aides, noting that he ran 1.5 kilometers to escape unhurt,

“You know today is Saturday and I usually go to my farm. So, I went to my farm along Gboko Road and on our way back, we started hearing some gunshots and we discovered people who were dressed in black and from experience, we now discovered that these are Fulani militias,” he recalled.

He said that though his security men were able to repel the attackers, he still had to call for reinforcement of Operation Whirl Stroke, police and State Security Service.



    The governor claimed that the attack came few days after the leadership of Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore held a meeting in Yola and singled him out as a thorn in their flesh that must be eliminated.

    Ortom wants FG to legalise weapons for ‘responsible civilians’, calls for end to open grazing

    He said he received intelligence to that effect, stressing that his life was in the hands of God and no ethnic militia had the power to take it without God’s permission.

    Ortom noted that the attackers were more than 15 in number, saying that they would fail as many times as they tried.

    The governor said he would send a petition to President Muhammadu Buhari and security chiefs against Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore, adding that allowing the leadership of the group to walk freely with security personnel attached to them was not in the best interest of the country.

    You can reach out to me on Twitter via: vincent_ufuoma

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