Don’t Be Miyetti Allah’s Mouthpiece – Ortom Warns Defence Minister

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Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom has lambasted the Minister of Defence, Brig.-Gen. Mansur Dan-Ali (rtd), for calling for a suspension of the anti-open grazing law in states.

The Minister made the call on June 5 for the suspension of the controversial law operational in Benue, Ekiti, and Taraba states, describing it as a hindrance to peace efforts.

But at an event organised by the office of the vice president on Tuesday, the Benue governor said the minister’s statement portrayed the “government in bad light”.

Ortom also called for the minister to “apologise to Nigerians” for the comment.

He said,  “Honourable minister (Audu Ogbeh), just one thing, I’m part of this government and I appreciate what this government is doing – so since the honourable minister of defence is not a member of NEC and you are constantly in NEC and you are member of the federal executive council where other ministers will be there. What you have said is very important, there should have be a level of caution.

“In a time like this, we should be sensitive to what is going on. When the young man was making his remarks, he was literally shaking and it is coming from the heart and that is how most Nigerians are. I wonder if the minister has had time to read the newspapers, he would have felt the feelings of Nigerians for him calling for the suspension of a legitimate law.

“It is not good enough, it is casting the government in bad light and the minister of the federal republic should represent the interest of Nigerians. He should not be the mouthpiece of Miyetti Allah in a conflict involving Nigerians.

“Especially when it is not your technical supervision. He should have allowed it to you the honourable minister of agric who has the responsibility of managing this to say or making such inflammatory statements because a lot of people read different meanings to it. Coming from a security council meeting and making such statements.

“Some people took it as the opinion of the security council. When he clarified it solve some problems – he needs to apologise to Nigerians.”

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