Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State has said the defection of former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, from the All Progressives Congress (APC) will not affect the party anyway even as he declared his strong backing for President Muhammadu Buhari to run for a second term in office.
He said the president’s integrity, discipline and courage to fight corruption in the country stood him out as the right man for the country till 2023.
The governor said Atiku’s decision to leave the APC is his personal decision which he is entitled to but however said it would not affect the fortune of the party in the state.
“Atiku is a politician and politics is about interest but his decision will not in anyway affect the APC. Just as he is leaving the party, others are coming in.”
Ortom who spoke in Makurdi, condemned those calling on the president to stop from nursing a second term ambition on health grounds, saying those behind the call were enemies of the country.
He said: “If you recall, we in Benue State were the first in the country to initiate prayers for President Buhari when he took ill early in the year.
“We thank God that he is back on his feet and getting better and stronger by the day. Today, he is up and doing, moving from one place to the other and carrying out his official duties.
“He is truly a gallant retired military man because he is still very strong.
Beyond that, he is a man of integrity, discipline and with so much courage to fight the cankerworm called corruption.
“He is a selfless leader who has instilled discipline in our people. That is the kind of person we need at this particular time of our development and history as a country.
“You may have an alternative, but for me, and as far as I am concerned I have not seen an alternative to President Buhari at this our very trying time.
“It is interesting to note that despite all the challenges he met on ground on assumption of office, a period when the country went into a deep recession, he took far reaching decisions that got us out of the recession, that is no mean achievement.
“I believe that we will get there someday as a nation, challenges may abound but I believe that we will overcome them. So I still remain committed to my believe that President Buhari remains the leader that we need at this particular time of our history and development as a nation.”