Stakeholders in the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Benue State are hopeful that the intervention of the Tor Tiv, Professor James Ayatse, will finally resolve the crisis between Governor Hyacinth Alia and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), George Akume.

Daily Trust reports that Alia and Akume had been at odds over the control of the APC structure in the state since the party came to power in May, 2023, with efforts to resolve the crisis, an intervention by Vice President Kashim Shettima, failing, resulting in the APC having two secretariats under two chairmen in the state.

Concerned about the situation, the Tor Tiv summoned Akume and Alia to his palace in Gboko on Easter Monday and reconciled them. During the meeting, the Tor Tiv expressed concern over the reports of political conflict between the two, describing their utterances, statements and activities as immature. He warned them to desist from such actions, emphasising that their disunity would affect the Tiv nation.

The royal father urged Tiv politicians to be proud of their heritage and work together for the progress and development of Benue State, cautioning that their actions were being closely watched by the international community, Nigeria and neighbouring states.

Following the reconciliation, journalists were allowed into the meeting room, where Akume and Alia shook hands, embraced and took photographs together with the monarch and a few supporters.

The Tor Tiv expressed satisfaction with the outcome, stating that both men had agreed to bury their differences and work together for the good of Benue people.

Reacting to the reconciliation, a witness described the body language of Akume and Alia as reserved, noting that they followed the Tor Tiv’s directions to shake hands and embrace each other without speaking to each other.

While neither Akume nor Alia addressed journalists after the meeting, James Ornguga, the state’s APC organising secretary, an ally of Alia, welcomed the reconciliation, emphasising the need for both leaders to meet privately to draw an agenda for their supporters.

Morgan Ihomun, the state’s Publicity Secretary of APC, who belongs to the Akume faction, also welcomed the intervention of the Tor Tiv, expressing hope that it would bring lasting solution to the party’s internal strife and pave the way for peace and unity.

Daily Trust

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