The presidency has reacted to accusations levelled against President Muhammadu Buhari by the Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom over the insecurity in the country.
Ortom had on Tuesday accused President Buhari of working for the Fulani ethnic stock to take over Nigeria in a reaction to the recent killing of residents allegedly perpetrated by herdsmen.
But the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, condemned Governor Ortom for blaming President Buhari for the deaths.
In a statement titled ‘Governor Ortom Only Sees The Problems Of Others, He Doesn’t See His Own,’ on Thursday Shehu said the President was saddened by the killings in the country as well as the governor’s accusations.
He said, “The President expresses his condolences to the families of our dear citizens who lost their loved ones in the recent spate of killings in Benue State.
“Furthermore, he states that the rising levels of incidents, especially the killings and violence in various parts of the country call for further collaboration with security agencies to curb its recurrence.
“He also states his disappointment and sadness to hear Samuel Ortom, the Governor of Benue State make a litany of accusations against his person and his government following the recent unfortunate incidents in the state.”
President Buhari and his administration has come under heavy criticism over the violence and killings in several parts of the country. While many critics have accused him of failing to act to secure the nation, Mr Shehu suggested that the government was working to secure the nation.
“No responsible government takes pleasure in such events as the killing of the military and that of innocent citizens taking refuge in an Internally Displaced People’s camp,” he said.
“President Buhari is deeply pained by the terrible acts of violence happening not only in Benue State but also in other parts of the country and expects that the law enforcement agencies will go to every possible extent to catch the perpetrators of these heinous acts and bring them to justice.”
On April 27, after some internally displaced persons were killed in an IDP camp in Benue, Governor Ortom said: “What is happening now, to me, is very clear; Mr President is just working for these Fulanis to take over the whole country.”
“His body language is what is being played out. The body language, the action and inaction of Mr. President shows that he is only the President of Fulani people; I have known this.”
He also lamented that no fewer than 70 people have been killed in the last two weeks in three local governments in the Benue State.