PROF PETER AGBESE-US based

In the just concluded PDP presidential primary, David Mark, our distinguished senator of over nineteen years, did very poorly, garnering only thirty-five votes out of the thousands of votes up for grabs. Some Idoma people have been incensed by this poor showing, wondering how Mark could not even get half of the Benue delegates of 121. Some attributed this to a refusal of the Tiv delegates to vote for Mark. Others saw a betrayal on the part of Ortom, who, the argument goes, had an obligation to support Mark in reciprocity for his support to Ortom. One young man, in anger, suggested that as payback, Idoma voters must vote against Ortom. Here is my take:

Benue must reject Ortom, but not on the basis of his political romance with David Mark but on account of the following: poor leadership, wickedness, visionlessness, mendacity, and lack of focus. Ortom’s horrible leadership has imposed pain, misery, poverty and hopelessness on Benue and its people. Ortom has not done anything that deserves being rewarded with a re-election. We have all paid a heavy price for Ortom’s terrible leadership. On the basis of numbers alone, even the Tiv have done very poorly under Ortom. The majority of teachers, civil servants and retirees are Tiv and like their counterparts from other ethnic groups, they have been short-changed by Ortom. When Ortom refuses to pay salaries, the lack of payment affects everyone regardless of ethnic backgrounds. It is important to remember that when Ortom, Suswam, and David Mark fight or make love, it is Benue people that suffer. We shall end our suffering not by fighting for them to treat themselves equitably or honorably but by taking away their love beds and the arena where they stage their make-believe fights.

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