Why I Will Never Support Ortom: The Good People Of Benue State Have Not Forgiven Him | News Proof



Why I Will Never Support Ortom: The Good People Of Benue State Have Not Forgiven Him

By Terfa Naswem

Thomas Jefferson, the 3rd President of the United States said: "The fundamental purpose of the United States is laid down in the Preamble to the Constitution: ". . . to form a more perfect Union, establish justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity."

Jefferson would note that the purpose of government was to protect the “inalienable rights” that man received from “their Creator.” In his view, if government became “destructive,” it was the right of the citizens to “alter or abolish” that form of government and replace it with a better one.

When former governor Samuel Ortom was sworn-in on May 29, 2015 as the Executive Governor of Benue State, he promised to transform Benue State into a state that will put grin on the faces of all. But the opposite became the case and he deviated from Thomas Jefferson's philosophy of good governance.

Jefferson philosophy of good governance means that the welfare of the whole should be the proper purpose of the state, but Ortom didn't bother about the welfare of the good people of Benue State and subjected them to perpetual sufferings and excruciating pains for over eight years of his abysmal and amorphous governance.

I was a member of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) before its merger to form All Progressives Congress (APC) on 6th February 2013.

APC was formed as a result of a merger of Nigeria's three largest opposition parties – the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), and the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) along with a breakaway faction of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) and the new PDP – a faction of then ruling People's Democratic Party.

I became a member of APC after the merger and continued to support the party. All I wanted was for the party to produce leaders that will transform Nigeria into a country that will make significant impact on all.

Ortom joined APC on December 11, 2013 to achieve his governorship ambition after losing the ticket to a former speaker of the State Assembly Terhemen Tarzoor, alleging that the primary election was forcefully truncated by the powers that be in his former party.

I personally campaigned for Ortom with every fibre of my being hoping that he would use his business experience in Oracle Business Ltd and as a former substantive minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment and concurrently, former supervising minister for Aviation would reposition Benue State for the common good. Unfortunately, he turned Benue State into a deplorable state.

When Ortom was sworn-in on May 29, 2015, I wrote an open letter to him, appealing to him not to fail the good people of Benue State. When he set the machinery of his government in motion, I said I will analyze his government after one year to know if it will succeed or fail. It was on May 29, 2016 that I gave up on Ortom while he was still in APC.I started writing articles against him, calling him to order because his government was anti-people.

When Ortom knew that he wasn't going to be given the gubernatorial ticket again on the platform of APC, he quickly defected to PDP on July 18, 2018 and blamed Sen. Dr. George Akume for contributing to his bad governance while in APC and assured PDP stakeholders, members and the good people of Benue State that he will do better in PDP.

Unfortunately, Ortom ended up becoming the worse governor Benue State has ever produced since its creation on February 3,1976 by deliberately refusing to clear the backlogs of salaries, pensions and gratuities; by not promoting civil servants; by not creating employment opportunities; by not enhancing infrastructural development and above all, by subjecting civil servants and pensioners to perpetual sufferings and excruciating pains.

Here are some pertinent questions that need pertinent answers from those who hirtheto furiously criticized Ortom and have suddenly embraced him:

(1) If you once criticized Ortom for being a failure by not clearing the backlogs of salaries, pensions and gratuities including others, what has he done differently now that made you to embrace him?

(2) Ortom after subjecting Benue people to perpetual sufferings and excruciating pains has never made any effort to rewrite his wrongs, so what justification do you have for your support for him now?

(3) Forgiveness comes with restitution. For those who have forgiven Ortom for the pains he caused the good people of Benue State, has he returned part of the funds he embezzled or the property of the government and some people he illegally took to the government and them?

(4) Restitution is a sign of true repentance for forgiveness. Has Ortom done this? If not, why should he be forgiven without restitution?

(5) Forgiving Ortom without restitution will encourage bad governance by subsequent governors and leaders in other areas in Benue State because they may feel that no matter how abysmal and amorphous their government or leadership might be, once they seek forgiveness without restitution, they will surely be forgiven. Should this be encouraged?

Even if some people have forgiven Ortom, the good people of Benue State are yet to forgive him until they see his fervent push for restitution and repentance.

Restitution is one of the things that God, through His Word, requires us to do, so that we can have a justified relationship with Him. If someone has stolen or defrauded another or maybe did evil, there is need for restitution for him/her to have a clear conscience.

God tells us to be at peace with everyone to the extent that it depends on us (Romans 12:18). That's hard to do when sin is contaminating a relationship. Making restitution can go a long way toward restoring peace and unity.

For as long as Ortom has not committed himself to the path of restitution, I will never support him regardless of those who have embraced him now. Those supporting him now who hitherto criticized him would be sending a wrong message to their supporters or subordinates.

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