Residents of Ebonyi State, on Monday, lashed out at Governor David Umahi over his comment that he was still sad the Igbos didn’t vote for him during the national convention of the All Progresives Congress, in Abuja, last month, alleging that the governor impoverished the state for his selfish ambition.
This was as they observed that Umahi merely plunged the state deeper into economic hardship and stagnation, when he allegedly carted away its meagre financial and agricultural resources to far North in pursuit of his selfish interest.
According to them, the governor didn’t understand the political tide of the Fulani oligarchy before hob-nobing with them, adding that what befell him at the just concluded Presidential primaries of the APC was a reward for his bad and high-handed governance in the state.
The PUNCH reports that Governor Umahi, who is Chairman of South-East Governors’ Forum, had on Friday, said he was still saddened by the outcome and events that played out during the presidential primaries of the APC and the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party, which saw the emergence of Bola Tinubu and Atiku Abubarkar as candidates, respectively.
He had expressed displeasure over the role played by the people of the South-East geopolitical zone, saying their hide and seek attitude during the primaries raised a question on their said agitation for Igbo Presidency.
A statement signed by the Governor’s Special Assistant on Media, Francis Nwaze, quoted Umahi as saying this in Abakaliki, while receiving members of the Ebonyi State Founding Fathers.
According to the Governor, the South-Easterners didn’t demonstrate the clamour for the Igbo Presidency during the primaries.
The statement had read, “My heart is sad by the outcome of the APC and PDP presidential primaries because when we were saying that we were clamouring for South-East president and it was time to demonstrate it, the South-East people couldn’t demonstrate it, so, it caused a lot of doubts on the sincerity of South-East on their quest but if not for anything else, I have achieved a state with proven character and content, we must be very proud of ourselves and we know that in God’s time, it will come to pass.
“My defection to the All Progressives Congress was in the interest of the state and South-East in general but it was misjudged because if our people had taken my reasons seriously, probably, we would have been differently treated especially in the party that we have invested so much in since 1999. But at the end of the day, I became a Prophet because all I predicted came to pass.”
But a resident, Chief Godwin Udeakaji, said Umahi remained the worst governor the state had ever had, adding all governmental structures collapsed under his watch.
Akaji said, “Umahi should go and rest. He has destroyed Ebonyi State and Ebonyi people have never had it this rough.
“Umahi has destroyed all the sectors of the government – from the government system to the development centres, to the judiciary and down to education. Nothing is working in the state and he knows it. Civil servants are crying and since he came to power, no promotion and no genuine employment.
“What visited Umahi at the APC Presidential primaries was Karma (it’s not a punishment ooo); but, a reward for all the evils he had committed in the state. He has made Ebonyi people become so poor. He is only interested in his family members and a few other cronies. Let him wait. More Karma will soon visit him. We are more saddened that Umahi took our money, rice, and big big millions of tubers of yams to the Fulanis to see whether he could be one of Buhari’s Kitchen cabinet, without understanding the political tide of the Fulanis. More Karma will meet with him in due course.”
The Coordinator, Tinubu Support Group, Ebonyi Chapter, Alhaji Haroun Ajah, said, “Let Umahi just manage and get his Senate ticket through court and not making noise over the presidency he didn’t really intend to contest.”
Also speaking, a former Commissioner for Information in the state, Chief Abia Onyike, said the governor had been living in a world of illusion, adding that no Ebonyian had ever taken him serious.
According to Onyike, who is the Director of Media and Publicity, “Governor Umahi has been living in a world of illusion. I don’t know how he perceives reality but from his recent quarrels with Ohanaeze Ndigbo whom he blamed for his recent APC Presidential somersaults, it’s quite clear that Umahi had a false impression of himself. But nobody took him seriously over his presidential ambition. It was another instrument for siphoning public funds. Ebonyians are in great trouble because we produced a very strange fellow as our leader in 2015 and we have paid dearly for it.
“Ebonyi civil servants now live in abject poverty and cannot pay the school fees of their children. This is the first time in our generation that the most advanced social class in the peasant state of Ebonyi cannot afford three square meals a day and people are dying because of the unprecedented greed of an extremely rapacious ruler called Umahi. Everything has collapsed, yet he keeps singing a different song, deceiving the people. He has never been in sync with the people he claims to lead. His government is a monumental catastrophy.”