The Governor of Benue State, Samuel Ortom, has said he is still a member of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The governor said this on Thursday at the ruling party’s secretariat in Abuja after a closed door meeting with the national chairman of the party, Adams Oshiomhole.
PREMIUM TIMES reported how the governor hinted that he was considering leaving the party. Mr Ortom had said he was given a ‘red card’ by a senator and leader of his party in the state, George Akume.
“I was given red card by the senator who is their leader in Benue state and I took it as serious enough,” the governor restated on Thursday.
“But the leadership of the party told me that the decision of the party leadership at the national level is superior to any individual and I think that is good enough.
”We have spoken to him (Oshiomole), he has spoken to me, stakeholders are going to be spoken to and that is where I belong. We have not concluded the matter, it is an ongoing process because I have always stood for peace and I always want peace to prevail.
“I am here in APC, a member of APC, I am still flying the flag of APC and I only said I was given red card. I’ve been corrected by the national secretariat.”
Appreciating the intervention of the party, he said he hoped they (leaders) would be able to resolve the matter.
Mr Oshiomhole also waded in. “APC does not have a red card in our cupboard so we can’t give what we don’t have. We recognised that in several states there could be legitimate legal issues, there could be agreements, disagreements, some contestations and this we are familiar with,” he said.
“Governor Ortom is not going anywhere, he is a very prominent member of our party, we appreciate his leadership in Benue and we will do everything possible to help those who have issues to have those issues resolved.”
He said the duty of the party is to find a common ground to resolve the issues.
“There are the evidence(s) of the fact that we are a free democratic party and when leaders have disagreements, our responsibility is to help them to find common ground and the issues in Benue are not so fundamental that we cannot resolve.
”We have made it confident that we would resolve them and Senator Akume is a very respected leader of the party, a former governor, he will recognise the need for peace and we have what it takes to make peace.
“In Benue, we are going for a win win solution. Anything we would do, we would do provided, the only thing we will not accept is anybody leaving the house that we have built together, that we are committed to and I think the government’s statement is clear,” he said.
The chairman also had uncomplimentary words for the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), which it had been sparring with since APC won the 2015 polls. The PDP has said it would throw its doors open for any defecting politician from the APC or any other party.
“For PDP that is deceiving people, they must know that only people without honour will vomit in the morning and in the afternoon they convert it to lunch.
“People like Ortom who have honour cannot leave PDP just three and a half years ago with his eyes open and then later there are some tensions in his master bedroom and is thinking of returning to deceiving people, that cannot be an option. He is a man of honour and he knows that one should look for one step if you want to take the second step to concentrate the first step, that’s the way to go.
“Be assured that PDP can go and do whatever they do, it won’t change the mind of those who are convinced about building the future.”