Benue community counters Ortom, says gov stage-managed attack to steal land

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Some indigenes of Tyo-Mu community in Markudi Local Government Area of Benue State has accussed Governor Samuel Ortom of  stage-managing his attack at the weekend to steal the land belonging to its people.

The association which is under the aegis of ‘Tyo-Mu Concerned Youth Vanguard’ said this in a statement issued by its President Vershima Tsebee, on Tuesday.

While disputing Ortom’s account of his attempted assassination, the group said Ortom had already acquired their land but never paid a dime.

Tsebee added that the attack was a ploy to send the the community packing from the area.

He said, “We have no place to live; our inheritance has been razed down without compensation or prosecution of those involved in the crisis.

“There is no mechanism put here to prevent this dastardly destruction of lives and property up till now.

“Then we wake up to find out that Governor Ortom is purchasing the land. We feel that the alleged attack is to further frighten the people and scare them away from the area to pave way for the governor’s land-grabbing agenda.”

He added, “What we have witnessed here for decades has been land crisis between Hyarev and Kparev. The last one led to the suspension of district heads.

“We were surprised to later learn that Governor Ortom came from the blues (sic) and bought the vast land for his private farm business when the people whose loved ones, houses and properties were destroyed have not been compensated,” the group added.

” The inhabitants are 100 percent Tiv-speaking people and predominantly farmers.

Because they live on the bank of River Benue, they are noted for massive rice farming, cassava, potatoes, sonata beans, groundnut and yams.

“The people thus live on a large farmland that spreads to about 15 Kilometres with a large Fadama that spread to River Benue.”

The Benue governor was reportedly attacked at the community by 15 suspected Fulani herdsmen on Saturday on the Makurdi-Gboko road.

Speaking to State House correspondents after meeting President Buhari in Abuja today, Ortom said he has no reason to fake his attack.

He also told reporters that he never wished his worst enemies what happened to him three days ago.