Chijioke Agwu, Abakaliki, Ndubuisi Orji, Abuja
Youths from 13 local government area of Ebonyi State has said the defection of Governor David Umahi from the Peoples Democratic party (PDP) to the All Progressives Congress (APC) would not affect the strength of the party in the state.
The youths under the aegis of Concerned PDP Youths in Ebonyi at a press conference in Abakaliki, yesterday, said though they were in total support for the agitation of a Nigeria president of Igbo extraction in 2023, the agitation should, however, be done within the PDP which they claimed had done a lot for the South East than any other party.
The youths recalled that under the PDP Federal Government, the South East produced five Senate presidents, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, deputy Senate President, Minister of Fiance, Chief of Army Staff for the first time and National Chairmen of the party, among other juicy positions.
Mr. Osita Kalu, technical assistant (TA) to Governor Umahi on Environment, who read the statement on behalf of his colleagues alleged Umahi defected to APC to seek asylum against post tenure stewardship review.
“We have carefully analysed the move made by the Ebonyi State governor towards dumping the PDP which made him everything he boasts about today and can tell the public that it’s more a move towards actualising self-interest than the coloration it’s being given.
“Why is it so? The APC he’s running into hasn’t zoned its presidential ticket to the South East. As such, a possibility is still in doubt. If we say someone could be seeking asylum in the arms of a ruling party against post tenure stewardship review, we should not be misconstrued.
“As young people in the PDP, who have always contributed our quota to democracy growth in Ebonyi. We are proud to say the party is robustly intact in the state with eight out of the nine National Assembly members from the state, three serving senators and five House of Representatives members and many state Assembly members and the major stakeholders of the state stocked in the party.”
Also, the PDP, yesterday, dismissed the purported suspension of former governor of Ebonyi State, Sam Egwu and 23 other members of the party in the state.
The PDP, in a statement, by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, said no leader of the opposition party has been suspended.
The opposition party stated that at the moment, it did not have a State Working Committee in Ebonyi, noting that any group that purports to have met to take any decision is at best imaginary.
“The public is already aware that the body vested with the task of piloting the affairs of our party in Ebonyi state is the State Caretaker Committee, which has since assumed its mandate to the approval and delight of the leaders and members of our party in Ebonyi state since the dissolution of our state executive in the state.
“Moreover, a check at the records of our party in Ebonyi affirms that no such meeting as purported in the said document was held to take any such decision at any time,” the PDP said
In a reaction, the caretaker Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state, Stanley Okoro, said PDP no longer exist in the state.
“PDP died the day Umahi defected to APC. No more PDP in Ebonyi.”