The Otukpo Youth Assembly has demanded an apology from Benue state First Lady, Mrs Eunice Ortom over alledged comments she made against the Idoma nation during a political rally recently.
According to a press statement signed by the president of the group, Comrade Inalegwu Onche, Mrs Ortom during a rally of zone B women, asked the women not to vote for the guber candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Barr. Emmanuel Jime, as his wife hailed from Idomaland.
“We received with shock the news of what transpired during the Zone B women rally on Wednesday, 9th January 2019. In her speech in Tiv language, the first lady, Mrs Eunice Ortom, referred to the wife of the All Progressives Congress Benue gubernatorial candidate, Mrs Comfort Jime (nee Oklobia) as ‘Amahue’ which we understand is a derogatory name the Tivs call Idoma people. We also learnt that Mrs Ortom said the Zone B women who are Tivs, should not vote for Barrister Emmanuel Jime because his wife is Idoma.
“Arising from an emergency meeting, after due consoderation of those statements, we adjudge the comments made by Mrs Ortom to amount to hate speech against the entire Idoma nation. We condemn her actions in totality and call on all Idomas to rise up against such.
“Let us remind Governor Samuel Ortom and his wife that Idoma people are a very important bloc in Benue state and together with our Igede brothers, command a voting population of over six hundred and fifty thousand which should not be taken for granted.
“We therefore we are demanding an immediate apology from the first lady within one week, failure of which we will embark on massive protests in the whole of Idomaland to show our displeasure. We also urge the Governor to call his wife to order and ensure that this does not repeat itself.” The statement read.
The group also called on Idoma sons and daughters accross political divides to remain united and work for the common interest of the Idoma nation.
They advised Idoma politicians to shun politics of division during the 2019 general election and urged them to always put the Idoma nation first before their personal interests.