Umahi Flags Off APC Membership Registration In Ebonyi

Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi speaks at the Government House in Abakaliki on January 5, 2021.

 

Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi, has flagged off the membership registration of the All Progressive Congress (APC) in the state.

The exercise scheduled to take place across the 13 local government areas of the state was flagged off on Tuesday at an event held at the Ecumenical Centre in Abakaliki, the state capital.

Governor Umahi directed the commencement of the exercise in the presence of a former governor of the state, Martin Elechi, and other party stalwarts who attended the event.

READ ALSO: APC Will Miss Tony Momoh, Says Lawan

Delivering his keynote address, he appreciated leaders and members of the APC in Ebonyi state for their steadfastness towards the progress of the party in the state.

He stressed the need for party members in Ebonyi to support the efforts aimed at moving the APC forward and ensure the delivery of democracy dividends to the people.

In his remarks, the APC Chairman in Ebonyi, Stanley Emegha, called on members to turn out en masse for the registration exercise.

Other party leaders at the gathering also admonished party members to see the exercise as a call to duty in order to bring an all-round development in the state.

Umahi, who is in his second tenure, was elected into office as governor on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in 2015 and 2019 respectively.

In November 2020, he defected to the APC on some reasons which included that the South East region has suffered injustice in the PDP.

While the main opposition party denied the accusation, the PDP alleged that the governor defected to actualise his ambition of contesting for president in the 2023 general elections.

In 2007, Umahi led the PDP in Ebonyi in acting capacity, and later served as the party chairman between 2009 to 2011.

Later that year, he emerged as the running mate to former Ebonyi State Governor, Martin Elechi, and became the deputy governor after they won the election.

While Elechi’s tenure neared conclusion, the former governor supported a former Minister of Health, Onyebuchi Chukwu, to succeed him – a move which was rejected by Umahi.

Umahi, who accused Elechi of violating an understanding that he would succeed him, later faced Chukwu and others in the PDP primary.

He clinched the PDP’s governorship ticket while the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared him the winner of the 2015 election after meeting the requirements to hold the position.

Southeast Governors Have Banned Open Grazing, Movement Of Cows By Foot – Umahi

 

The Southeast governors have banned open grazing and the movement of cows by foot in the region in a bid to tackle the security challenges confronting the zone.

Chairman of the Southeast Governors’ Forum and Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi disclosed this on Monday during the inauguration of the All Progressives Congress in Abakaliki.

“The governors of the southeast had banned not only open grazing, but we have also banned the movement of cows by foot into the southeast,” he said.

“In each of the five states of the southeast, we are managing ourselves very well. We have also stopped the movement of cows across communities.

“What we discussed in the southeast with the herdsmen, with the farmers is the method that has been in place for a long time before now.”

Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi speaks during a meeting in Abakaliki on February 1, 2021.

 

The governor also cautioned the easterners against instigating crises in the country through the dissemination of fake videos alleging the killing of Fulanis by members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) in the South-East.

READ ALSO: Two Locals Die As Soldiers Kill Several Bandits In Kaduna

While noting that security is not an issue that should be politicised, Governor Umahi called on leaders of the region to create a framework that will secure the lives and properties of the people.

“What our people must know is that security is not political, what is demanded of the leaders is to put up programs that favour the people and foster national unity.

“There is a new dimension that is taking place in the southeast which is very dangerous. It is when the communities use the name of IPOB, the video and upload it to the social media and say it is IPOB that is burning the houses of herdsmen.

“It is not IPOB, it is the communities that are doing this and this is very dangerous for the Igbo man. I am talking to us as leaders,” he added.

Killings: Desperate Politicians Aligning With Bandits To Destabilise Nigeria – Umahi

 

The South-East Governors Forum have accused desperate politicians of aligning with bandits to stabilise Nigeria.

Chairman of the Forum and Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi, made the comments on Tuesday after a virtual meeting with the five governors of the region in attendance.

“The governors are so worried about the killings and kidnappings that are going on by our people in the southeast, killing our own people and the security agencies,” he said.

“The situation is being heightened by the activities of very desperate politicians, this time irrespective of party affiliations.

“There are so many desperate politicians in all the political parties that are so desperate for power and they have aligned with some bandits in the southeast to destabilise the nation.”

Governor Umahi explained that the five southeast states dissociated themselves from a bi-partisan meeting convened by some stakeholders from the region on the security situation.

The Ebonyi governor urged them to instead speak out and condemn killings within their domain.

Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi speaks at the Government House in Abakaliki on January 5, 2021.

 

He also seized the opportunity to shed more light on a viral social media video, relating to the eviction of some Nigerians from the northern part of the country resident in Ebonyi State.

READ ALSO: There Has Been No Increase In Electricity Tariffs, Says Keyamo

“The Fulani settlement that decided to move to Taraba State and retained some of the family members in Ebonyi State and of course, the man is still here.

“Politicians as we have intelligence gathering went to put a voice and said it is the Igbos that are chasing away the herdsmen from Ebonyi State.

“Such a video went very wide and was causing panic in other parts of the country. That was very much uncalled for because we also have over 11 million of our people living in the north.

“We have so many of our people living in south-south and south-west. When people do this, they think they are doing it to pull down a particular governor, not knowing that they are doing it to start killings against our people.”

We Have Spent Over ₦5billion In Touching People’s Lives Within One Month, Says Umahi

Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi, speaks during a Christmas visit to some hospitals in Abakaliki, the state capital on December 25, 2020.

 

The Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi, has said that his administration has spent over ₦5 billion in touching the lives of the people of the state.

Umahi stated this on Friday during a Christmas visit to the Alex Ekweme Federal Teaching Hospitals, Fetha One and Two, and the Mile Four Maternity Hospital in Abakaliki.

Although the governor did not explain how the money was spent, he noted that the sum was expended by the local and state governments.

READ ALSO: Insurgency: Buratai Visits Yobe, Asks Troops To Pray For Fallen Soldiers

“Between the Local Governments and the state, in this December alone, we have spent over N5billion. When we didn’t have the money, we had to borrow because touching people like this gives me a lot of joy,” Umahi said.

“So when few people are saying there is no empowerment, don’t mind them. This is the real empowerment, to set the patients free, to set the poor free, to set the oppressed free, that is the real empowerment.

“Roads is the basis of the development of every state and we needed this road so badly. Remember we are the salt of the nation, but today, we are the road of the nation.”

The governor also used the opportunity to donate some food items to various hospitals as well as pay the outstanding medical bills for indigent patients across the state.

Umahi Was PDP In The Exterior, But APC At Heart – Adesina

A file photo of President Muhammadu Buhari having a chat with Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari’s special adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, says Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi, has always been a member of the All Progressives Congress (APC) at heart even while he was in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Adesina who said this in a piece on Friday titled, ‘Dave Umahi’s Heart of Lion’, praised the Ebonyi State governor for being courageous enough to dump the opposition PDP for the APC.

Umahi had been a PDP man, possibly all of his political career. He was a deputy governor to Martin Elechi for eight years, succeeded him as governor, and is now in his second term.

READ ALSO: Presidency 2023: Jonathan, Other Chieftains Free To Vie For PDP Ticket – Secondus

“Umahi had always loved and respected President Muhammadu Buhari, and never hid it, though they were of different political parties. And the President reciprocated in like manner. In fact, the first State the President ever visited in the country and passed the night was Ebonyi. Umahi was PDP in the exterior, but APC at heart,” he said.

While praising Umahi’s action, Adesina said, “Gov Umahi has done what Napoleon couldn’t do. He has officially crossed from the PDP to APC. Only a man with the heart of a lion could do that.”

He added that “What Umahi exhibited last month in crossing from PDP to APC can best be described as the heart of a lion.

“If there was a time the APC needed a shot in the arm, it was the time Dave Umahi came. It changed the country’s political map and configuration. And APC is breathing easier again.”

Umahi earlier in November dumped PDP for APC after weeks of speculation that he had taken the decision to dump the opposition party for the ruling party.

He, however, faulted the claims that he left the PDP to achieve his ambition of becoming the president in 2023.

2023 Presidency: My Future Is In God’s Hands – Umahi

I Wish Buhari To Recontest Presidency, Says PDP’s Umahi
File photo of Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi

 

Governor Dave Umahi of Ebonyi State has reacted to his rumoured 2023 presidential ambition saying his future is in the hands of God.

The governor who spoke during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today on Friday said contrary to speculations that he was nursing the ambition of succeeding President Muhammadu Buhari in 2023, he planned to quit politics by then.

“My future is in the hands of God. I have told God I want to leave politics in 2023 and because my life is owned by him, I need his permission on anything that is called future this,” Umahi said.

“This is my own decision but God’s decision takes precedence over my own decision,” the governor explained.

When asked for the difference in political ideology between the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the governor believes it is too early to determine that.

READ ALSO: APC Defection: My Friend, Umahi Wants To Be President – Wike

The governor who described himself as a brand new baby in the party said he needs to learn how to walk and run before determining the political-ideological differences between the two parties.

“I have not studied the manifesto of the APC. I am just a brand new child, I should be pampered very well I this APC.

“I will have to learn how to walk, run before I can answer the question about the ideologies of the APC,” he added.

Umahi’s remarks come three days after Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, slammed him for leaving the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Wike who spoke in Port Harcourt on November 17 said Governor Umahi left the PDP because he wants to be the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2023 and not injustice meted on the South East by the opposition party, as claimed.

Governor Wike stated that committed members of the PDP were not surprised that the Ebonyi governor formally defected to the APC on Tuesday, which he had been fraternising with for a while.

APC’s Administration Far Better Than PDP – Umahi

File photo of Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi

 

 

The Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi, has said the administration of the All Progressives Congress (APC) is far better than the 16 years of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Umahi who spoke in Abuja made this known on Friday during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today.

“When you compare, I can see that the partial administration of the APC is far better than that of my former party. No one person in APC is dictating the affairs of the party,” the governor said.

According to the governor, his decision to dump the PDP for the ruling party wasn’t done out of protests.

To Umahi, Ebonyi State has benefitted from the five-year administration of the ruling party unlike the 16 years PDP held sway at the nation’s helm of affairs.

“We have choices in life to make. I have made the choice of APC because of the way they run their affairs and respect for Mr President and equity to all the governors who have benefitted.

“I continue to say that the 15 years of PDP and the five to six years of APC central government have a lot to show in my state. I am not choosing APC out of protest,” he said.

READ ALSO: APC’s Administration Far Better Than PDP – Umahi

The governor’s remark comes 24 hours after he officially joined the APC where stakeholders and governors of the ruling party were in Ebonyi to receive him.

Dignitaries at the event include former Senate President Ken Nnamani; Chairman, APC National Caretaker Committee who is also the governor of Yobe State, Mai Mala Buni; Jigawa State Governor, Muhammadu Badaru Abubakar; Kebbi State Governor Abubakar Bagudu and Niger State Governor,  Abubakar Bello, among others.

Governor Umahi in his speech at the official defection announced that “henceforth, Ebonyi is 100% APC. We are all moving to APC.”

He, however, called for unity between both APC and PDP, noting that, “Together, we are stronger.”

 

One PDP Governor Will Leave The Party, Says Wike

Wike Disagrees With Army Over Training Of Neighborhood Watch Recruits
Governor Nyesom Wike (File Photo)

 

Amid the reactions trailing the defection of Governor Dave Umahi from the Peoples Democratic Party to the All Progressives Congressive, Governor Nyesom Wike has suggested that one more governor will leave the party.

“I can tell you, there is one PDP governor that will leave,” he said Wednesday during an appearance on Politics Today.

Governor Wike, however, declined to give the name of the governor or when he will leave the party.

Just like Umahi, he expects the governor to “come up with another excuse” when giving reasons for his defections.

“The point is that these are the people who have been playing anti-party (politics). They will be romancing with the APC in the night and coming out to PDP in the day time,” he said.

Read Also: Wike Challenges Umahi To Debate Over His Reasons For Defecting, Allegations Against PDP

Anti-party activities have bothered Governor Wike for some time but he does not think the PDP is taking the problem as seriously as it should.

“My problem with our party is that when you speak the truth, they want to crucify you. I have raised this issue severally and severally and severally.”

Umahi’s defection has created a political storm, sparking angry reactions from the PDP and cutting down the number of governors the party has in the South-East to two (Abia and Enugu). The APC controls Imo and now Ebonyi, while APGA holds sway in Anambra.

Governor Wike believes that people attribute too much power to governors when the real power lies with the people.

Citing the 2019 victories PDP recorded over incumbent APC governors in Bauchi and Adamawa, he downplayed the impact of Umahi’s defection on future elections.

‘We didn’t have party structure in Adamawa, we won because the people spoke. We didn’t have party structure in Bauchi, we won. The people spoke,” he said.

“As I speak to you today, performance is what gives any party, assuming a ruling party in that state, an advantage to win a future election. It is not because you are the governor.”


Watch The Full Interview Below.

Wike Challenges Umahi To Debate Over His Reasons For Defecting, Allegations Against PDP

L-R (Governor Dave Umahi and Governor Nyesom Wike)

 

 

Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State on Wednesday challenged his Ebonyi State counterpart Dave Umahi, to a debate over the reasons he gave for defecting from the Peoples Democratic Party to the All Progressives Congress.

Wike threw the challenge during his appearance on Politics Today, a day after Umahi confirmed his much-speculated defection.

The Rivers State governor was unhappy with the actions of Umahi in the build-up to his defections and his claims that there is injustice in the PDP and more opportunities for consultations in the APC among other things.

Asked if the PDP is willing to make some adjustments to allow room for better consultations, Wike ruled himself out of such a move insisting that no such problem exists in the party.

“Let me tell you one thing, assuming the party even wants to do that, I won’t be a party to it. Nobody threatens anybody because you want to get something,” he said.

Read Also: Wike Slams Umahi, Says Nobody Should Have To Threaten Anyone Just For Personal Gain

According to him, Umahi’s comment means he has been working with the APC.

“If he has not been working with the APC, how will he know there is more room for consultation in APC than in PDP? The point remains that Umahi knows and I challenge him to a debate and I will tell him I am not saying that he shouldn’t be a president. Nobody is God to say who will be President and who will not be President. It is God. “But the point everybody is making is ‘when did you consult Ohanaeze Ndigbo?’ ‘When did you consult the leadership of the South-East Peoples Democratic Party?”.

“This so-called injustice you are talking about; you were chairman of the party under PDP – there was no injustice. You were deputy governor under the party – there was no injustice. You were governor for four years before, there was no injustice.

“Now you are a second-term governor, you are realizing there is injustice for the presidency. Has PDP come out to say we are zoning Presidency to A or B for you now to say, ‘Yes, having done this against my people I will go here because these people have zoned it to us. Since they have zoned it to us, I will move to that place (party) because I am a man that wants to fight for my people. So, on what basis can you now say there is injustice?”.


Watch The Full Interview Below.

Umahi’s Defection Based On Principle Not Coercion, Says Buhari

File photo of Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has commended the Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi for defecting to the All Progressives Congress (APC).

In a statement issued on Wednesday by his spokesman, Garba Shehu, President Buhari said Umahi’s defection was based on principle rather than coercion.

“I am proud of Governor David Umahi for taking this bold decision in accordance with his conscience and principles rather than any external influence or coercion,” he said.

“Good governance is very important to us in the APC, and I’m glad that the governor has cited this as a major factor in his decision to join us. I urge our citizens to pay less emphasis on identity politics if we want our democracy to make a positive impact on our country.”

He noted that “with men like Umahi, I foresee a brighter future for our democracy because the voters will be more motivated by performance records of parties and their candidates.”

SEE FULL STATEMENT HERE: 

 

STATE HOUSE PRESS RELEASE

PRESIDENT BUHARI PRAISES UMAHI’S DEFECTION, SAYS IT’S BASED ON PRINCIPLE RATHER THAN COERCION

President Muhammadu Buhari has commended the defection of Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi, to the All Progressives Congress (APC), describing it “as a bold move driven purely by principle rather than opportunistic motives.”

Reacting to the defection, President Buhari said: “I am proud of Governor David Umahi for taking this bold decision in accordance with his conscience and principles rather than any external influence or coercion.”

According to the President, “Good governance is very important to us in the APC, and I’m glad that the governor has cited this as a major factor in his decision to join us. I urge our citizens to pay less emphasis on identity politics if we want our democracy to make a positive impact on our country.”

He noted that “with men like Umahi, I foresee a brighter future for our democracy because the voters will be more motivated by performance records of parties and their candidates.”

“Let me once again; commend the boldness of Governor Umahi for taking this courageous decision in a country where principles are in short supply among many. I know people might call him names, but that is the price men of principles have to pay for acting according to their conscience and convictions” President Buhari added.

Garba Shehu

Senior Special Assistant to the President

(Media & Publicity)

November 18, 2020

I Didn’t Join APC For Presidential Ambition, I Will Quit Politics In 2023, Says Umahi

 

Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi, has faulted the claims that he left the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to achieve his ambition of becoming the president in 2023.

He told reporters on Tuesday in Abakaliki, the Ebonyi State capital that the insinuation that he joined the All Progressives Congress (APC) with such an intention was nothing but false.

Rather, the governor disclosed that he would quit politics by the end of his second term in office in the next three years.

He said, ”People can write all that they want to write, it is not my business. In 2023, if God permits, I will be quitting politics and I will be very satisfied because the miracles in Ebonyi State may just be the reason I was born in the first place.”

Governor Umahi added, “If people are shouting in this country about fairness, equity, and justice, and I stand in a place where such is not practice, then I have to re-examine my head.

“Let it be known that I am God’s project and I don’t go beyond the limit of my calling. I am satisfied being a governor and by His grace, for eight years.”

READ ALSO: Ebonyi Governor, David Umahi, Defects From PDP To APC

Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi, speaks about his defection at a press conference on November 17, 2020.

At the briefing, the governor confirmed that he has moved to the ruling party, bringing an end to the speculations about his defection.

He explained that leaving the PDP was in protest of the alleged injustice by the opposition party against the South East zone.

Governor Umahi told reporters that he was happy that he took the decision to leave the PDP and would have no regret in such regard.

He believes his defection will expose the opposition party to its mistakes and make corrections where necessary.

“I refuse to be called a politician because if politics is all about lying, cheating, and backstabbing, that is not my family character.

“So, I protest and nothing will stop me from this protest and I believe that this movement will cause PDP to understand that no man is an island and no single person can be called a crowd,” the governor stated.

292 Trafficked Ebonyi Indigenes Rescued In Six Years – NAPTIP

The Director-General of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons, Julie Okah-Donli

 

Two hundred and ninety-two indigenes of Ebonyi State have been rescued from human trafficking.

This was disclosed on Friday by the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP).

Speaking during the inauguration of the Ebonyi Task Force Team on Human Trafficking at Government House in Abakaliki, NAPTIP Director-General, Julie Okah-Donli said the rescue covered six years.

She explained that from 2004 to July 2020, the victims consisting of 205 females and 87males were subjected to child abuse, child labour, sexual exploitation and sale of babies.

“From 2004 to July 2020, a total of 292 indigenes of Ebonyi state have been rescued by NAPTIP, consisting of 205 females and 87 males, mostly from Izzi, Ezza, Ikwo, Afikpo north and south, Onitsha.

“These victims were subjected to child abuse, child labour, sexual exploitation and sale of babies.

“Between 2017 and 2020, the international organization for migration (IOM) returned 11 indigenes of Ebonyi state various parts of the world, Libya, Mali, Niger, the Middle East and parts of Europe. This comprised 9 females and 2 males,” she said.

The NAPTIP boss explained that human trafficking represents a clear and present danger to human and national security, adding that it must be addressed boldly and frontally.

READ ALSO: Any Strike Action Will Worsen Nigeria’s Economy, NGF Tells Organised Labour

While noting that the Task Force members have a pivotal role to play, Okah-Donli asked them to adequately sensitize people at the grassroots.

She also wants them to provide services and support to victims who have been rescued and returned as well as information sharing and law enforcement.

Speaking further, the NAPTIP boss also called for strong political will and budgetary provisions on the part of the state governments, in addition to the commitment of traditional institutions, religious and community leaders.

On his part, Governor Dave Umahi commended the agency for its efforts in curbing the menace in the country.

Speaking through his deputy, Kelechi Igwe, the governor assured the agency of the state government’s support in fighting the scourge of human trafficking.

He also promised to promote the activities of the agency to the grassroots in order to halt the activities of human trafficking in the state.