Ortom: How I Escaped Gunmen’s Attack

  • Says he ran 1.5km to escape unhurt

Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom has narrated how he escaped an attempt on his life by gunmen, suspected to be herdsmen, who attacked him on his farm Saturday. The governor said he ran 1.5 kilometers to escape unhurt.

Briefing journalists at the Benue Peoples House after the incident, the governor said he was inspecting his farm on Saturday when armed herders, dressed in black, opened fire on him and his security aides.

He said it took the swift response of his security aides to repel the attack, while he ran a long distance to escape unhurt.

“If not for my security men and God I would have been dead by now, I ran over 1.5 kilometers to escape while my security men repelled the herdsmen”, he said.

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 and must be eliminated.

He said he received intelligence to that effect.

Governor Ortom said his life was in the hands of God and no ethnic militia had the power to take it without God’s permission.

He said as many times as they try, they would continue to fail.

He stated that the ranching law of the state will not be repealed for any reason, stressing that no intimidation could force his administration to reverse the decision of Benue people against open grazing.

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.

Earlier, Ortom’s media aide, Mr Terver Akase, who was in Makurdi at the time of the attack, had told journalist that the governor’s convoy was ambushed at Tyo mu community, a distance of less than 20 kilometers from the Benue State capital while returning from his farm along Gboko road.

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