The Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom says he will no longer remain mute about national issues which he says have subjected the country to public criticism .
According to Governor Ortom, chief among the national issues to be spoken about include the situation in which the former acting chairman of the EFCC and the Minister of Justice are allegedly enmeshed in corruption allegations and the rising insecurity.
At an expanded caucus meeting of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Makurdi, the governor questioned what he termed constitutional infractions at the national assembly where a bill that was dismissed in the 8th assembly, is smuggled and ready for passage without a public hearing, just to ensure that the failed ruga settlement plan was passed in the guise of the national water resources bill.
Allow ‘Responsible Citizens’ Carry Sophisticated Weapons
Ortom has in recent times been airing his views on various subject matters, stating clearly his position on diverse challenges especially the security challenges faced by the country.
At a virtual meeting convened by the Centre for Values in Leadership, CVL, in collaboration with Nigeria Governors’ Forum, NGF, Governor Ortom urged the Federal Government to grant licences to responsible citizens to carry sophisticated weapons such as AK47 to deter criminals from attacking innocent and helpless Nigerians.
He said the policy should be backed by a strict legal framework to prevent illegal possession of arms by the citizenry without exception.
This submission contained in a paper presented yesterday during the virtual meeting convened by the Centre for Values in Leadership, CVL, in collaboration with Nigeria Governors’ Forum, NGF.
In the paper titled ‘Insecurity and Governance Challenges in the New Normal’, the Governor said governments at all levels must come to terms with the fact that insecurity is a real threat to the development of the country and be willing to sincerely tackle the menace.
He also recommended adequate funding of security agencies and continuous training of their personnel to enable them to be abreast of global dynamics in the fight against insecurity.
The Governor urged the Federal Government to embrace ranching as it is the global best practice of animal husbandry and to enact a law to end open grazing which often comes with attacks on farming communities by armed herdsmen militia.
Governor Ortom also advocated improved educational standards and enhanced public enlightenment campaigns to give the people, particularly youths the needed orientation to shun negative acts and become more patriotic.
He called for the repositioning of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency through training, funding, and logistics to successfully confront drug barons and peddlers; a move he said would stop illegal drugs from entering and circulating in the country.
Governor Ortom also recommended that the embargo on employment be lifted and more job opportunities created to take Nigerian youths from the streets.
He tasked the federal, state, and local governments to show greater commitment to developing the agricultural value chain to generate more job opportunities for Nigerians.
Governor Ortom concluded his presentation by stating that Benue State has made significant contributions to national development and as the food basket of the nation, if the state is threatened by insecurity, the negative impact would be on the entire country.
He went on to solicit the support of all stakeholders in tackling security challenges and pledged the resolve of his administration to ensure the safety of lives and property.