Alhaji Abubakar Tsav, the Commissioner in charge of the Public Complaints Commission in Benue State, says he will not retract his alleged damaging comments about Governor Samuel Ortom as requested by the Tiv Traditional Council.
Tsav told the News Agency of Nigeria on Wednesday in Makurdi that he stood by his letter where he urged the anti-graft and security agencies to investigate allegations of corruption against Ortom.
NAN recalls that Tsav in the said letter accused the governor of “executive recklessness” and privatization of the state.
The 10-page letter, dated May 16, titled: “Whistleblowing: Stagnation of Benue State,” was addressed to Governor Ortom.
Tsav also made copies of the letter available to NAN in Makurdi and all the anti-graft agencies in the country.
He accused Ortom of “corruptive nepotism and executive recklessness”, alleging that the governor has placed his family business, Oracle Business Limited, above the state, claiming that the action represents a conflict of interest.
However, the leadership of the PCC in the country and Tiv Traditional Council had waded into the matter and tried to reconcile Tsav and Ortom.
The reconciliation meeting advised Tsav to publicly apologize to the governor and retrieve all the petitions against him and any member of his cabinet within two weeks.
But Tsav told NAN that he would not heed the advice, saying: “I stand by what I wrote: they should take me to court, jail me, it is one of the price of activistism.
“I cannot at my age write a letter to say that what I wrote were lies.
“How would the members of the public take this, that I lied?
“I stand by what I wrote.
“They should take me to court or jail me.
“I am doing this for my people not for myself.
“It will be a shame for me to come and impugn on my integrity at this age.
“I will not do that.
“If they want, they should hang me.”
Tsav admitted that he had immense respect for the Tor Tiv and would do “whatever the Tor Tiv wants me to do, but I will not mortgage my integrity”.
NAN reports that the governor had on June 19 sued Tsav at a Magistrate Court for alleged incitement.
Michael Gusa, the Benue State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, in an application for criminal prosecution, alleged that Tsav wrote “an injurious and false letter against the governor and government of Benue”.
Gusa, in his application, said that the letter contravened Section 143 (d), (c) and (e) of the criminal procedure code Law of Benue State, 2004.