I have no political godfather —Ortom

GOVERNOR  Samuel Ortom of Benue State, on Monday,  said he had no political godfather, hence no one  was interfering in the affair of his administration.

Featuring on a live personality programme, entitled, Issues  of the moment on the state radio station (Radio Benue)  monitored in Makurdi, he categorically declared that a former Senate Minority Leader,  Senator George Akume, does not interfere in the governance of the state.

The governor, who dismissed insinuations in certain quarters that senator Akume was his political godfather, who (Akume) has an overwhelming influence on his day-to-day administration of the state, said, “As governor, i have the right to govern the state without someone dictating to me.”

He added: “Senator Akume is a political leader of the state; he was a retired permanent secretary, governor for eight years and a three-time senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. He remains a major stakeholder who cannot be pushed aside in the politics of the state.

“I do relate so much with Senator Akume; he is a fair-minded person. He is a kind person even to his enemies. He does not interfere with my government. Senator Akume is a major stakeholder in Benue politics. But, that does not mean I must do his bidding. He has never imposed anything on me,”Ortom said.

Speaking on the commencement of selection for a new Tor Tiv, he pledged a transparent process.

The late Tor Tiv Alfred Akawe Torkula, died in November 2015 and since then, the paramount stool has remained vacant.

Ortom, who declared a three-day fasting and prayer, which commenced on Monday, said he would not interfere in the selection process of the chiefs and the paramount ruler.

“God told me not to be involved because I have the power as governor to do so, but I will not. I call on Benue people to fast and pray for God-fearing chiefs to be installed,” he said.