The Chairman, Caretaker/ Extra-Ordinary National Convention Planning Committee of the APC, Mai Mala Buni, APC governors and chieftains of the party are among dignitaries expected to formally receive the Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi, into the party at a rally, in Abakiliki today (Thursday).
Umahi who announced his defection from the Peoples Democratic Party, on Tuesday, is expected to move into the APC along with members of the State Executive Council, the 13 Local Government Chairmen, the 63 Development Centers’ Coordinators, Liaison Officers and several others.
A programme of events released by the governor’s office on Wednesday, governors elected on the platform of the APC and select members of both the APC and PDP in the state the Christian Ecumenical center Abakaliki, on Wednesday night, ahead of today’s event.
Meanwhile, an Ebonyi state chieftain of the APC, Chief Egwu Chima, on Wednesday, said the APC should be prepared to tolerate Umahi’s excesses.
He said this at a media briefing in Abakiliki, on Wednesday. He alleged that the governor would bring into the party an era of “nepotism and treachery.”
Chima, who was a former Commissioner for Information and State Orientation in the state, stated this during a meeting with journalists in Abakaliki, on Wednesday.
He said, “We will also benefit from the possible relaxation of Umahi’s orchestrated subterfuge on the APC through the relentless sponsorship of fictionalization of the party through partisan dissension by otherwise notable party stakeholders who are now his political ‘John the Baptist.’
“On the other hand, the truth is that Umahi has a mission in the APC. This mission is personal and selfish and only known by him. Please, forget advertisements that APC may zone Presidency to the South-East that will enable him to either run for President or Vice President.”
‘Umahi’s defection based on principle’
The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), on Wednesday, said, the decision by the Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi, to defect from the PDP to the APC was based on principle and not coercion.
Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, disclosed this in a statement titled “President Buhari praises Umahi’s defection, says it’s based on principle rather than coercion.”
Shehu quoted the President as commending what he described as the governor’s boldness for taking the “courageous decision,” in a country where principles are in short supply among many.
Shehu quoted Buhari as saying that, “I am proud of Governor David Umahi, for taking this bold decision in accordance with his conscience and principles rather than any external influence or coercion.
“Good governance is very important to us in the APC, and I am glad that the governor has cited this as a major factor in his decision to join us.
“With men like Umahi, I foresee a brighter future for our democracy because the voters will be more motivated by performance records of parties and their candidates.”