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Former aide accuses Ortom, security adviser of masterminding attack on him

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[File] Governor of Benue State Samuel Ortom

Governor denies involvement, alleges blackmail
Former Commander of the Benue State Livestock Guard, Alhaji Aliyu Tershaku, has accused Governor Samuel Ortom and his special adviser on security, Lt. Col. Paul Hemba (rtd.), of masterminding the recent armed attack on him in Makurdi.

Tershaku, who was also senior special assistant to the governor on security, told newsmen in Makurdi at the weekend that he was attacked on his way home after an aborted meeting with the governor and the security adviser at Government House.

He accused Hemba of luring him with a meeting at the instance of governor, with the intent to eliminate him.

But Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Terver Akase, denied the governor’s involvement in the purported attack on Tershaku, which he condemned.

According to Akase, if it is true that there was an attack on Tershaku, that is unfortunate.

“We condemn it and expect security agencies to unravel the truth because this government is a government that had invested so much in security. The governor is a peace-loving man. He wants his people to be in peace. He wants his people to be protected. That is why he never hesitated to speak out anytime the security of Benue people is at risk.

“The governor had done so much in the area of security and would not turn round to ask somebody to attack anybody in Benue, whether an indigene or not. As far as you are within the boundaries of Benue, it is the responsibility of the governor to protect you. He had never and will never ask anybody even to harass, let alone send people after somebody,” he said.

Akase further said the government was suspecting Tershaku of peddling blackmail, just to be reappointed as commander of the livestock guard, which he had applied for and lobbied governor through people.

“I hope that this is not a way to rope in the current director of the livestock guard, Linus Jaki, so that he will be put away from the position and the baton would fall on him (Tershaku),” he added.

After the attack, Tershaku said he quickly petitioned the Inspector General of Police (IGP) who directed immediate arrest of his assailants, and the security adviser, who was later granted administrative bail.


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