Governor Umahi stated this in an interview with State House correspondents after a closed-door meeting he had with President Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
He also perceived that “without fighting corruption, Nigeria would never grow”.
Umahi visited the President to discuss the bad condition of some Federal Government roads in his state, especially roads that lead to the sites of some natural resources that investors had already expressed interest in.
He explained that investors would not be able to access the sites until the roads are fixed.
The Governor said, “Ebonyi State has solutions to the problems in the nation, in the area of agriculture, mineral resources like cement, lead, zinc, copper and coal. We also have a large deposit of salt.
“A lot of investors, when they heard of the patronage that the President intends to give to local production of these items, besieged Ebonyi State, because they want to invest in these areas.
“We have issues, the roads leading to these sites are federal roads and they are very difficult to access. So I came to ask Mr President for two things.
“One, some banks are willing to lend money to Ebonyi State to construct these roads and they want assurance from the Federal Government that when they lend us money to construct these roads, the Federal Government will reimburse them.
“Two, there are some people or companies that want to do Public-Private Partnership with the state government on the development of these roads and they want a guarantee from the Federal Government that they will allow them to put toll gates so as to get back their funds.”
Meanwhile, in reaction to claims that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Governor wants to defect to the APC, he said it was wrong to assume that he was planning to defect, adding that he was still very happy being a member of the PDP.
“That (I may be planning to dump PDP) is not correct. We have to understand what opposition is.
“When the President comes out to fight corruption, why should we oppose that? It is a very good job and that is what the nation needs.
“Without fighting corruption, there is no way this country can grow. So, we support the President because it is a very good policy.
“I support him personally because I am doing the same thing in Ebonyi State. I share the same character with him fighting corruption, and that does not amount to cross carpeting. I am still very happy being in PDP.”