Chijioke Agwu, Abakaliki.
As the battle for the soul of Ebonyi State thickens, Ebonyi Governor, Chief David Umahi, has, said he was ready to face squarely some influential elders and leaders of the state known as Abuja Group led by former Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Chief Anyim Pius Anyim and former governor, Senator Sam Egwu.
The governor declared that he would in due course publish contracts and other patronage given to the persons that are currently fighting his government.
Umahi who was reacting to alleged gang up against him by Anyim, Egwu and other People’s Democratic Party (PDP) National Assembly members from the state over his recent defection to the All Progressives Congress (APC), lamented that Anyim had in the past fought his predecessors.
He urged the former SGF to discontinue his plans to fight him, stressing that he would do anything within his powers to fight them back.
Speaking during an enlarged APC stakeholders’ meeting at the Banquet Lodge of the Old Government House, Abakaliki, Umahi revealed that he actually planned his defection to the APC together with Anyim, but said the former senate president backed out of the defection plan because he (Umahi) went and met with President Muhammadu Buhari without carrying him along.
According the governor, the plan was for Anyim, Egwu and the National Assembly members to join him in APC two weeks after his defection to the ruling party.
Umahi said he consulted all the National Assembly members and elders of the state about his defection to APC and they all gave their nods to it, and even agreed to defect with him.
He said the only grievance of the NASS members and other leaders was that he outsmarted them by joining APC before them, revealing that they actually wanted to join the APC before him.
“They were planning to ambush me, but it is difficult to catch the air.”
Reacting to the allegation making the rounds that Anyim gave him N5 bilion to prosecute his governorship election in 2015, Umahi said: “I was a deputy governor, somebody occupying the highest position from the South East (referring to Anyim) went and arranged for a N5 billion loan for me to prosecute the presidential election for his government. I had to sell many of my property to pay back that money.”
Umahi vowed to retaliate the fight if Anyim and his group insisted on fighting him, saying, “let me tell you, I’m not afraid of anybody but I respect everybody. But I have said that if God sent me, this will be the last fight in this state.
“All these people that came together to fight me, they collect contracts, they collect monthly pay, they collect vehicles and when they are asked to bring people that worked for us, they will bring their wives, children and relations. Now, they are dressing words for us. We are in Chapter one, in Chapter two, I will publish all that I have done for the leaders of this state.”