Catholic Priest stops Governor Ortom from addressing the church in Benue

A Catholic priest from Gboko diocese in Benue state on Wednesday 27 December 2017 stopped the State Governor, Samuel Ortom, from giving a speech at the thanksgiving service to mark the 64th birthday of Senator George Akume at St Christopher's Church Wannune, Tarka LG.

Reverend Father Ashwe did not allow the Governor to speak on the issue of non payment of salaries in the state.

Reacting to the incident, Terver Akase, the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, said the governor understands and respects the decision of Gboko Catholic Diocese.

The statement read: “We have read various statements arising from the thanksgiving mass yesterday in honour of Senator George Akume at St. Christopher's Catholic Church, Wannune, Tarka Local Government Area.

“We wish to state that Governor Samuel Ortom understands and respects the decision of Gboko Catholic Diocese not to allow politicians to speak during masses and therefore would not have felt slighted when the Priest in Charge of the Wannune Parish did not permit him to speak during the mass in accordance with the decision of the Diocese.

“We urge those amplifying the incident and making inflammatory statements for political reasons to sheathe their swords.

“Governor Ortom is a God-fearing leader who submits himself to Christian authorities and has enormous regard for the Catholic Church in particular. He won't allow the cordial relationship he has built with the church over the years to be jeopardized.”

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