Abuja, April 14, 2019 A stalwart of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Benue, Mr John Tondu, on Sunday urged all political stakeholders in the state, to come together and work with Gov. Samuel Ortom.
Tondu, in an interview with newsmen in Abuja, said that now that the elections were over, it was important for all to leave behind what happened during elections, but work together for the development of the state.
He said it was high time for all political stakeholders in the state to forget their party affiliations and work with Ortom, saying the interest of the state should be paramount to all.
“My advice is that Benue is our state, all the political gladiators should be able to come together to see how we can reposition Benue on the map of Nigeria,” he said.’
Tondo, who came second in the PDP governorship primary election in Benue, also advised Ortom to see himself as the governor for all the people of Benue and not just the PDP.
Fielding questions on a comment credited to a governorship candidate during the re-run election that Benue would not see real development until it was freed from the grips of the PDP stakeholders, Tondu said that governance was not about political parties.
“Today, PDP is the ruling government in Benue, even the governor when he begins to look at the issues of governance as a political party that is the first step of failure.
“So my advice to him is that he should look at Benue as one not as a political party because he is the governor of the state.
“ Beyond the All Progressives Congress (APC) and All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) whatever political party you are coming from he is the governor of Benue state.
“So, what should be paramount in his mind is what will improve the standard of living of every Benue person and resident not just the interest of members of the PDP,” he said.
Tondu, who was also a former Commissioner for Land and Survey in Benue, expressed his willingness to work with Ortom’s administration in moving the state forward.
He said that if Ortom required his expert advice, he would give him objectively because his interest was the development of Benue.
“You cannot set an agenda for a governor, who is sitting on the chair, you can only advice, that is what I can do, advisory role.
“So, if today the governor genuinely extends his hands of fellowship and it depends on what perspective, I don’t necessarily need to be his appointee to contribute my own quota to the development of Benue.
“I am already contributing to the development of Benue in my own little way,’’ he said.
Asked if he would be willing to serve as a commissioner, Tondu said, “I don’t think at this time that I am willing to serve as a commissioner.”
Speaking on the just concluded elections in Benue, Tondu commended the professionalism and conduct of the security agencies as well as performance of the Independence National Electoral Commission (INEC).
“When you ask me the outcome of the election it is a very broad question, in every contest there are expectations and there must be a winner and loser.
“All we can ask people is that the winners should be magnanimous in victory and the loser should also be able to accept defeat so that together we can move the state forward,’’ he said.