By Princess-Ekwi Ajide, Abuja
A Catholic priest Rev. Father Hyacinth Alia, has emerged winner of the All Progressives Congress, APC, governorship rerun election in Benue State.
The Priest who will be 32 years old in priesthood, on July 7 this year, promised that he would tackle insecurity with the sole aim of turning around the fortunes of Benue State.
Father Alia who spoke with newsmen at the APC National Secretariat, Abuja, said the spate of insecurity needs to be put in check, saying that once the proper perspective is laid down, the home-grown criminality that is negatively destabilizing the peace of the state will be reduced.
According to him, coming into politics as a Roman Catholic Priest is to wipe off the tears of the people and wrestle the state from the hands of evil politicians, who are using divide and rule strategy to cause havoc in the State and return Benue to the path greatness.
He thanked God for the victory, and invited all fellow contestants to come back, join hands with him so that they can move to the next level and work together for the State as God has given them much which they must not allow to waste.
Revrend Father Alia, said there are challenges which necessitates proper education of the people on the importance of getting their Permanent Voter’s Cards (PVCs) since democracy is all about the people and they are the people.
On insecurity in Benue state, father Alia, said: “First, our leadership got the whole thing very wrong, issues of security are not issues of propaganda “It is not going out there and saying we are holding this meeting and that meeting; tackling insecurity is beyond that.
According to him, in tackling insecurity, you have to get everyone on board irrespective of their status, age or class, all the people must be on the same page to be able to work together.
He opined that another big factor affecting the state negatively is that they have what he described as “the home-grown bad guys” who are destabilizing the peace and causing havoc and harped on the need to put them in check.
“I believe once we do this and let everyone understand the importance of unity, we shall make headway. We are all together and we all have a common goal “You don’t neglect the youths, you must pay the civil servants, employ the youths, do a number of things that will bring them on board. Give them ownership of the State and let them know that you are just a servant. Then they will see you as a servant-leader and they will come on board”
Father Alia noted that ordinarily, he wouldn’t have stepped into partisan politics especially as a Catholic Priest because there are several anxieties there that the church may not want to get involved with but he stepped in to take the lead so that they can learn and do better and salvage the State.
He however, noted that to do what he is doing, one need to have the passion, compassion, patriotism and love for the State because when the elements are lacking, one can not do much this according to him, is why the State has failed.
The priest turned politician, quipped that when love for the people is lacking, it means serving one’s self interest and not the masses whereas it is the people that desire integrity, responsibility, accountability, and transparency which he is bringing to the table so as to save the souls of those who have been rejected and neglected; the suppressed and oppressed; those the society have written off and he chose the road of partisanship to save the soul of the people and Benue state because his people wants him to save them.