I’m leaving more assets than liabilities for Benue – Ortom

…Signs additional two bills into law

By Chimezie Godfrey

The Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom says he is leaving more assets than liabilities for the incoming administration.

Governor Ortom stated this Friday, May 26th, 2023 in his address at the valedictory State Executive Council meeting at the Benue People’s House, Makurdi.

Addressing the members of the  State Executive Council at the Council Chambers, Governor Ortom explained that the assets his administration was leaving behind outweigh liabilities.

Governor Ortom maintained that although his administration was leaving behind arrears of salaries, pensions and gratuities, he had prepared good grounds for smooth take-off by the incoming administration to offset the arrears.

According to him, “We are not leaving only debts but also credit that will accrue to the state”, stressing that Benue State will also benefit from the Stamp Duties refund following negotiations by the Nigeria Governors Forum with the Federal Government on behalf of the 36 states to be inherited by the incoming administration.

Governor Ortom said that he and members of the cabinet were exiting office but they would have the opportunity to work together in future endeavors.

He charged the outgoing Executive Council members not to be discouraged by whatever difficulties they might have encountered in the course of service, adding that they should remain as one indivisible family.

Meanwhile, Governor Ortom had on Thursday, May 25th, 2023 assented into law, two additional bills passed by the State House of Assembly.

The two bills signed into law by the Governor are: “A Law to Establish Benue State Widows Commission and to Prohibit Harmful Cultural Practices Against Widows, Protect them from Exploitative Acts, Punish Offenders and for Related Purposes.”

The second bill assented to is: “A Law to Make Provision for the Maintenance of Former Governors of the State and their Deputies and for other Matters Connected thereto.”

The Governor granted assent to the bills during the PDP stakeholders meeting at the New Banquet Hall of the Benue People’s House.

He commended the State Assembly for doing due diligence and in line with the provisions of the extant laws, adding that legislative instruments were critical to policies and programmes of government towards strengthening institutional framework of governance.

Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon Titus Uba who was represented by his deputy, Rt. Hon. Christopher Adaji expressed optimisim that laws passed by the 9th State Assembly will ease governance and enhance development in the state. 

Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice, Barr. Michael Gusa presented the bills for the Governor’s assent.

Barr. Gusa said as the chief law officer of the State, he was satisfied with the regular enactment of Acts by the State parliament to guide decisions of the Government in line with the rule of law.

He added that the checks and balances that existed among and between the three arms of government enhanced good governance, stressing that the executive, legislature and judiciary exercised their statutory obligations seamlessly.