Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja
Former Senior Special Assistant to Governor Samuel Ortom on Public Utilities, Environment and Sanitation Hon. Nathaniel Ikyur, has deplored the move by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to investigate details of expenditure made to tackle security challenges in the state.
He described as erroneous the ugly picture being painted by political adversaries which gave the impression that all is not well with the Middle Belt state.
Addressing journalists in Abuja on the political and security crisis in the state, the House of Representatives aspirant for Gbokk/Tarka Federal Constituency said no chief executive of any state had ever been investigated and asked to produce minutes of a security meeting by an anti- graft agency.
The former aide said time has come for Nigerians to know that it is not all about bad news in Benue State as a lot of development strides have taken place in the state, despite security challenges.
Apart from spending huge resources on the well-being of numerous persons displaced by herdsmen attacks, the governor has embarked on various developmental projects including roads, water and electricity.
He said that a lot of funds have committed in constructing feeder roads and procuring electricity transformers to make life better for the rural dwellers.
On the nagging issue of salary arrears, the aide said that the state government owns its workers five months having consistently maintained payment of salary every month since January this year.
Ikyur who was accompanied with other Benue officials said that as at today the state habours about 312,000 internally displaced persons resulting from the deadly attacks by invading herders.
“Our state has been under siege since the assumption of office of governor Ortom due to the killings and attacks by herdsmen but the narrative seem to have changed with the move by the APC to politicise the pathetic situation that the people of Benue state have found themselves,” he said.
Ikyur also expressed concern over the antics of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in trying to probe the governor Ortom’s security vote even while the governor is still in office and covered by immunity.
According to Ikyur, all the sudden attacks on the governor and Benue were as a result of his decision to quit APC and rejoined the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Regarding the current security challenge in the Benue state, the officials lamented that some areas of the state are under an army of occupation with the suspected herdsmen holding tight to a large chunk of land and driving the farmers away from their ancestral lands