Ortom Reacts To Having A Hand In Calls For Ayu’s Removal
Ortom’s stand is contrary to that of Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, who has been demanding for Ayu’s removal. Ortom is a staunch ally of Wike.
Recall that Wike, since he lost PDP presidential primary ticket to former vice president, Atiku Abubakar and the eventual selection of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State as running mate instead of him, he and his allies have been demanding the resignation of Ayu.
According to the governor, the presidential candidate of the party and the national chairman can not come from the same zone – the North.
Atiku hails from Adamawa (North -East) while Ayu comes from Benue (North-Central)
The governor based his call on a supposed agreement that if the presidential candidate emerges from the north, then the national chairman steps down or resigns.
But Ayu has refused to resign, saying he was duly voted at the national convention.
His refusal to step down has made the Rivers governor to withdraw his support for Atiku.
But according to a statement issued by Ortom’s Chief Press Secretary on Monday, September 26, the governor has confidence in Ayu’s ability to lead the party to victory in next year’s general election.
Ortom was reacting to the allegations by Jemgbagh Development Association, Abuja that he was plotting the downfall of his fellow Benue man, Ayu.
The governor argued that he and other prominent Benue citizens, worked tirelessly to to ensure that Ayu was elected “as the national chairman of our great party even against all odds”.
“The governor could not, therefore, turn around to work against him to be removed from office,” the statement reads.
“Governor Ortom vouched for the integrity and capacity of Dr Iyorchia Ayu to lead and rebuild the PDP to victory and rescue Nigeria from the misrule of the APC maladministration. That is why Ayu was returned unopposed by the northern caucus of the party and got elected as the national chairman of the PDP at the party’s convention.
“Where was Jemgbagh Development Association, when Governor Ortom galvanised support from across the leaders of the party to make Dr. Ayu PDP’s National Chairman? What was their contribution to that project that they now want to use clannish stance to blackmail the governor?
“This amorphous and emergency Jemgbagh Development Association, Abuja, which has never been heard of before, is now masquerading as the voice of Jemgbagh to embark on campaign of calumny against Governor Ortom, who has worked selflessly for the people of Benue State.
“Governor Ortom is more Jemgbagh than most of the people claiming it now. This is fact, because he has done more for Jemgbagh, both in terms of appointments and projects executed as well as patronage in the area, than even one of the Jemgbagh sons, who was governor. Besides, Governor Ortom has consistently worked for the unity of Benue State and will never stand in the way of any of her citizens, either here in the state or in the diaspora
“For those, who claimed to be leaders of this Jemgbagh Development Association, Abuja, we urge them to be truly developmental in their drive to build cohesion among the people and attract real development to their area rather than engaging in mischief or blackmail.”
In other news, Kanyi Daily had reported that Ortom told Atiku and the PDP that ignoring Wike and his allies was dangerous.