The governor’s imminent exit got further traction at the weekend when he dissolved the state cabinet and in the process sacked associates of his one-time political patron, Senator George Akume.
When the governor dissolved the cabinet, he, however, retained four commissioners, who were known not to be in any way linked to Akume, a former governor of the state who wields immense political influence in the state.
Ortom’s possible exit from the APC has been mostly fuelled by internal feelings of revolt against the APC upon allegations that the federal administration also controlled by the same party had been indifferent in the face of herdsmen attacks on the people of the state. In a move to stop the apparent defection, Progressives Governors Forum, PGF, had about two months ago, set up a committee to repair the relations between the governor and the President. The committee is headed by Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno State and has the governors of Kaduna and Adamawa states as members.
That move, it seemed, may have failed, following the governor’s shocking move at the weekend with the dissolution of the cabinet. Sources told Vanguard that the governor could be headed to his former party, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, having apparently reached a truce with his predecessor, Mr. Gabriel Suswam.
The truce, it was gathered yesterday, was facilitated by the Tor Tiv, the pre-eminent traditional ruler in the state. Ortom’s continued presence in the APC, it was gathered, had become politically risky in the light of increasing misgivings by citizens of the state to the opposition by the federal administration to issues pertaining to the face-off between herdsmen and farmers in the state.