The Governorship candidate of All Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA, has stated that Governor David Nweze Umahi of Ebonyi State is stoking the fire of election violence pretty early.
In a statement made available to our correspondent by Charles O. Otu, Special Assistant, Media and Publicity to;
Ebonyi APGA 2023 Governorship candidate, Professor Benard Ifeanyi Odoh accused Umahi of threatening and harassing innocent elderstatesmen and citizens who have warmly welcomed the APGA team to their various folds and communities.
According to the statement, “we have also received authoritative hints about a devious plot to launch coordinated attacks on some of the stakeholders, leaders and elderstatesmen who warmly welcomed us in their abodes during our last week’s consultative visits to Afikpo North and Ivo Local Government Areas respectively.”
He added that they” are not cowed a bit by these asinine attacks on our campaign materials including even the fresh plan allegedly being hatched to launch offensives against certain individuals for showing us their support and goodwill”.
The statement reads,
“As the political atmosphere gains higher momentum ahead of the official kick-off of open campaigns by the various political Parties across the country and in line with the new electoral law, it has again become necessary that the Governorship candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, Professor Benard Ifeanyi Odoh draws to the attention of the Ebonyi and indeed, the Nigerian public, the latest dangerous anti-democratic scheming of the Ebonyi State government led by Engr. David Nweze Umahi.”
” Undoubtedly but characteristically perturbed by the impetus gained so far by the APGA in its continued, marathon consultative visits to stakeholders, community leaders, traditional rulers, politicians across Party lines and the generality of the Ebonyi electorates in the last few weeks and months, the Ebonyi State government we authoritatively gathered has re-enacted its anti-democratic posture by now resorting to threatening and harassing innocent elderstatesmen and citizens who have warmly welcomed the APGA team to their various folds and communities.”
” Already, we are aware of an alleged threats by the Governor and through his surrogates to withdraw their staff of office and official vehicles allegedly dished out to two traditional rulers from Ebonyi South who had very warmly received our Governorship candidate and his consultation train which included National and State Assembly candidates into their palaces for counsels and possible royal blessings as the custom of the land ordinarily demands.”
” We have also been informed of a purported suspension of another traditional ruler in the same Ebonyi South for awarding a Chieftaincy title to the APGA Senatorial candidate for Ebonyi South, Chief Ifeanyi Eleje by the Umahi-led government.”
” We have also received authoritative hints about a devious plot to launch coordinated attacks on some of the stakeholders, leaders and elderstatesmen who warmly welcomed us in their abodes during our last week’s consultative visits to Afikpo North and Ivo Local Government Areas respectively.”
” Ebonyians would recall that this latest plot is coming less than two weeks after almost all APGA billboards in the State were targeted and removed in the dead of the night by agents suspectedly working on the instructions of the Umahi-led government in Ebonyi.”
” It would also be recalled that we had immediately written to the State’s Security agencies demanding diligent investigations into the wanton vandalization of our billboards in various strategic points in Abakaliki even when no extant law known to the Advertising agency had been breached. All we gathered was that the State government was hell-bent on displacing our billboards with those of their Party’s candidates- a move the contracting agency had stoutly turned down hence our payment was still running. As we write, no arrest (s) have been made and the perpetrators who are allegedly under the ‘cover and protection’ of the State government have not only continued to walk freely but have reportedly been boasting that they will still remove APGA billboards if and when the Advertising agency replaces them.”
” Whereas, we are not cowed a bit by these asinine attacks on our campaign materials including even the fresh plan allegedly being hatched to launch offensives against certain individuals for showing us their support and goodwill, we wish to maintain and clarify just for the records that:”
” 1. The traditional rulers whose children we all are and who in their own rights are custodians of our cultures and tradition have NOT BREACHED ANY KNOWN LAW to warrant their being harassed, threatened or even attacked by the State government or any of its agents simply for receiving the APGA consultation train. Of course, the roles of the traditional rulers remain neutral as father figures in their respective domains and the case of our visits to them was not any different. The traditional institutions in Nigeria, are clearly respected as the ones the citizens, in spite of their political stance or affiliation, should look up to for succour in all manner of circumstances. Their wise counsels as elders, their prayers and well-wish, including their royal blessings as well was all that the APGA train had requested and received from them and members of their cabinet.
- The Ebonyi State government led by Engr. Umahi is stoking the fire of election violence pretty early by these reported actions and alleged plots and may rather be setting the tone for a catastrophic violence which it may blame on the opposition as usual. The Umahi government should have concentrated on using its army of occupation (appointees) to try to market its candidates to the electorates (that’s if they are sellable) by also visiting and canvassing for the support of critical stakeholders in the Ebonyi 2023 elections project. We wish to caution again, that these primitive style of desperately attempting to cause violence and instill fears on innocent Ebonyians who are very desirous of a new dawn in government and governance after what many consider as wasteful and locust years WILL NOT WORK for them this time around in the forthcoming 2023 general elections.
- Again, we caution the youths; hired and paid agents of the State government who have become willing tools for the perpetration of these heinous attacks on our Party- APGA which they now consider a major threat ahead of the 2023 general elections to DESIST FROM BEING USED because when the chips are down, those who are sending them may not be there to save them from facing the full wrath of the law. As they should already know; what is at stake is their future that is being plundered and not those of their retailers who have not only looted enough of our common patrimony but have already sent their wards and children out of the country for safety and better lives.
We therefore encourage all those who may have been victimized, threatened, harassed or even attacked by the State government or its agents either in the past or present to keep their fate very strongly in our vision and mission to REDEFINE EBONYI come 2023. This is even as we pledge to continue to play by the rules.
Ebonyians should not be shaken or their faiths dampened by the actions of these desperate cowards. As a people, we should also not forget in a hurry the very fact that emperors have risen and fallen even before our very eyes in the past and so also shall be the disastrous end of the present detractors of our peace, joy and human progress as a people!
We must therefore continually KEEP THE HOPE ALIVE especially as we go into the 2023 electioneering campaigns and the election itself. It sure will come to pass that the ‘Pharaoh’ we see today, we shall see but no more. After all, Ebonyi belongs to all of us!
Our Party- APGA has the best team with the right competence to fix our State and make it one of the enviable bests, viable and globally-competitive States in Nigeria and the world at large. The freedom and economic emancipation of our people remains very paramount in our manifesto and agenda in seeking the mandate of Ndi Ebonyi to govern them in 2023 and we are unfazed by the current antics of some desperate and drowning despots whose records and antecedents are already well known to Ebonyians.
For we believe that the oppressors and their agents can only continue to have their way and perhaps plunge our dear State into a deeper mess if we don’t rise up to the occasion by not only refusing to succumb to their intimidations but ultimately using our Permanent Voters Cards to end their reign of impunity by voting and electing credible and accountable leaders in the 2023 general elections.”