Controversy has greeted the alleged defection of Governor of Ebonyi State, Engr. David Umahi, from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the All Progressives Congress (APC), ahead of the 2023 general election.
The member representing Ezza South/Ikwo Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, Hon. Chinedu Ogah, had on Saturday congratulated the Governor Umahi for finally joining APC.
Ogah, who spoke authoritatively, said: “We don’t need division in South-East; we need unity in South-East, we need to be part of the Central government. We can’t continue to be in opposition.”
Ogah, the only National Assembly member from Ebonyi State elected on the platform of APC, revealed that Umahi’s defection was perfected after his meeting with critical stakeholders and leaders of APC including President Muhammadu Buhari.
He said: “Yes, Governor Umahi’s defection to our great party, APC is a step in the right direction. We cannot afford to remain in opposition. We must join the ruling party to continue to reap the dividends of democracy.
“I am calling on other Governors in south east to toe the line of Governor Umahi and join APC. We have to be at the centre, we have to join the mainstream politics for overall development of our zone and the country in general.
“President Muhammadu Buhari has done well. Everybody should join the APC to encourage him.”
But the Governor in a press statement this afternoon through his Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mr. Francis Nwaze, in Abakaliki, denied Umahi’s defection to APC.
The statement reads: “My attention has been drawn to the news making the round in some quarters of the media, alleging that the Governor of Ebonyi State, Engr. David Umahi has defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC).
“The news is a product of a figment of imagination on the part of the carriers as Governor Umahi was, is, and is still flying the flag of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
“It is, however, difficult to observe how people are easily persuaded to believe in fake dummies in the name of rumours.
“If for any reason, Governor Umahi wishes to leave People Democratic Party (PDP), it will be officially communicated and can never be a product from rumour mongers,” he stated.
When contacted for further reaction, the Commissioner for Information and State Orientation, Barr. Uchenna Orji said he is somewhere and may not be chanced to react to the defection.
Orji who insisted on seeing the lawmaker’s statement before reaction said: “send to me the report, let me know what they are saying, “so that I can react. I am somewhere now.”
Ebonyi State PDP Chairman, Barr. Onyekachi Nwebonyi, when contacted couldn’t pick calls or respond to text messages sent to him by our reporter for reaction.