IMMEDIATE past governor of Benue State, Dr Gabriel Suswam, has said he did not run away from arrest.
Debunking the insinuation by the present administration that he ran away over the purported indictment of N107billion by the probe panel, which led to the arrest of some of his (Suswam’s) men by the police last week, Suswam described it as a pedestrian talk, saying he only travelled abroad for medical attention and assured of his return soon.
The former governor said he remained in high spirit, not minding his persecution and that of his men by the present administration, saying, “my pride remains that all of these took place under my watch as governor of this state, and I am grateful to Almighty God that I was able to surmount the pressures of high office and placed the sovereignty of the people above narrowed personal interests.
“By the time we, as a political group, are leaving the stage of power, we had lifted the democratic tastes of the people to certain standards above what previously obtained.
“It is the reality of having attained such standards of democracy that today places a minimum level of expectation by the people on the ruling All Progressives Party (APC)-controlled government in Benue State. And these are expectations that could only be met through ingenious application of available resources to execution of projects which are of priority to the people.
“These expectations in themselves form the basis for a contract between the people and government, which is immediate and urgent in demand, and under any circumstance, there hardly could exist room for excuses for non performance.”
“Against this reality, I dare say that the governmnt of my successor, Governor Samuel Ortom, will need to evaluate all over again its priorities to align them with the expectations of the people for maximum impact. Spending quantum amount of time and resources seeking after prosecution of my person and those who served under my administration could hardly pass for the priority of this state in this contemporary times.
“While I and the others being arrested on a daily basis may have nothing to fear from those arrests, it could never be ignored that such a trend is hardly helpful to the quest for a better and stronger Benue State, which is only possible under an atmosphere of unity of purpose.”
He, however, warned the present administration in the state against the sustained attacks on him and the opposition party, saying “no governmnt can in all seriousness afford to throw away a sizeable portion of its human resources such as the political family he and others do belong to.
He admonished the Peopls Democratic Party (PDP) faithful in the state “to remain steadfast, law-abiding and understand that the role of the opposition, which is a necessity thrust by historic circumstances, is one they must discharge with a view to building our state more than any thing else.”