By Biodun Busari

The spokesperson of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential Campaign Council, Senator Dino Melaye has criticised Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom for saying he will not support the presidential ambition of the former Vice President Atiku Abubakar.

Melaye said this during an Arise TV interview on Tuesday while reacting to Ortom’s disposition that he would not support a Fulani man to become the nation’s president due to atrocities of the Fulani in Benue State.

Recall that Ortom spoke in Makurdi on Monday in the presence of his disgruntled colleagues – Nyesom Wike, Seyi Makinde, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi and Okezie Ikpeazu of Rivers, Oyo, Enugu and Abia states respectively.

“My people are being killed and you want me to be quiet; you want me to be a slave to a Fulani. It’s better I die. Anybody supporting Atiku in Benue is an enemy of the state,” Ortom had fumed.

Reacting to the statement on Tuesday, the former Kogi senator said while he condemned the criminalities of Fulani herders going on in Benue state and in Nigeria, it was not fair for Ortom to drag Atiku in the mud over the issue.

Melaye said, “Everybody has the right to support any presidential candidate of their choice. But it is unfair for Governor Ortom to put the blame of criminalities of Fulani herders going on in Benue State on the lap of our presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar.”

He further said, “I also condemn the attacks and killing of people in Benue, but this has nothing to do with Atiku Abubakar.”

Atiku’s media aide also said not all Fulani are evil. He said there are good Muslims and Christians among the Fulani adding that former Presidents – Shehu Shagari and Umaru Yar’Adua were both Fulani and appointed Benue indigenes into their respective governments.

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