Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
The Benue State chapter of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has accused the All Progressives Congress (APC) and its governorship candidate, Emmanuel Jime, of trying to blackmail traditional rulers in the state with fake Abuja land allocation.
But reacting swiftly, the APC dispelled the accusation, insisting that the land allocation papers being given to traditional rulers in the state by its governorship flag bearer had no political undertone.
A statement signed by the state Publicity Secretary and Chairman, Publicity Sub-Committee, Benue PDP State Campaign Organisation, 2019, Bemgba Iortyom, noted that the plot was aimed at forcefully securing the support of the traditional rulers ahead of the forthcoming polls.
“It has come to the attention of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Benue State that the All Progressives Congress (APC) and its governorship candidate in the state for the 2019 elections, Emmanuel Jime, have perfected plans to blackmail first and second class traditional rulers in the state before President Muhammadu Buhari in order to forcefully secure their support towards the coming polls.
“The plot, it has been revealed, involves claims to be made by Jime that he has given to the royal fathers land allocations in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, following which a list of the beneficiaries is to be taken to the president.
Iortyom alleged that Jime planned to send the list of beneficiaries to the presidency and they would then be required (by the presidency) to reciprocate the purported good gesture of land allocations by mobilising their subjects in support of APC to the 2019 polls.
He recalled that a few days back, Benue APC guber candidate, Jime, had published on his social media platform, claims that he had secured land allocations for traditional rulers in Benue State and that he would be making available, documents to those allocations to the royal fathers.
“But on his (Jime’s) visits to a number of local government areas, he failed to make available a single land allocation paper to any traditional ruler, and investigations have revealed that the APC guber candidate’s claims were only the initial steps in the execution of a nefarious blackmail plot against Benue royal fathers.
The Benue PDP commended the courageous decision of the royal fathers so far to distance themselves from any such ‘Greek gift’, if at all it does come while also reminding them of the vantage position they occupy.
Reacting, state Publicity Secretary of the APC, Jams Ornguga, said the land allocation paper that the party’s governorship candidate was distributing to traditional rulers was the product of a process he started in 2014 while he was a member of the House of Representatives.
“The land allocation paper that Mr. Jime is currently giving to some traditional rulers in Benue is a process he started in 2014 while he was in the Green Chamber and has no political undertone at all.
“Recall that as a member of the House of Representatives then, he collected the details of all 23 traditional rulers and forwarded same to the appropriate quarters in Abuja at that time.
“The papers are now ready and some traditional rulers have collected theirs while it is now difficult to give out to those who have died. It is Jime’s personal effort and has no political undertone at all,” Ornguga stated.
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