Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State has boasted that he is unperturbed following the decision of correspondents of national dailies resident in the state to boycott activities of the Benue State Government.
The correspondents are protesting what they described as Ortom’s “sealed lips” in the face of “brutality on journalists” by security personnel attached to the governor.
A communiquè issued by the Correspondents’ Chapel of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), following a meeting presided by the chairman Alloysius Umalo reads in part: “Members particularly noted with dismay the tear gassing of its chairman, Mr. Umalo and state council Vice Chairman of the NUJ Mr. Martin’s Kajo, by security men supervised by the governor’s Chief Security Officer (CSO), while trying to cover a critical state function (signing of budget).
“The most recent incident was the intimidation and open threat on the Assistant Secretary of the chapel and correspondent of This Day newspapers, Mr. George Okoh by a security man attached to the governor, while he was in government house to cover briefing on the security meeting held Thursday at the Old Banquet Hall.”
The chapel “regretted that since the brutality on journalists started, the governor has continued to keep sealed lips.”
But a source close to the Chief Press Secretary (CPS) to the Governor Terver Akase, said they are no losing sleep on the threat.
“We have contacts of all the editors of these papers. Besides, NTA and Radio Benue are not part of the threat and so we are not worried,” the source who refused to be named quoted Akase as saying.