In view of the resolution of the Northern Governors Forum not to support zoning in 2023, insisting that despite the fact that some Northern states’ governors had earlier expressed views for a “power-shift to three geo-political zone in the South with a view to promoting unity and peace in the nation”, the South East Revival Group (SERG) has carpeted the Ebonyi state governor, David Umahi, over his earlier defection to the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The group, in a statement signed by its national coordinator, Chief Willy Ezugwu, said that it was “following with keen interest the political developments, the intrigues, and politicking ahead of the 2023 presidential election”, saying it was “amazed when the governor defected to APC.
“We had demanded that the Ebonyi State governor gives the people of the South East a convincing reason why he left the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the APC.
“It was not that the Igbos hate the APC but we needed to understand the political moves by south east leaders as all zones have now shown that they have their own interests.
“Recent comments credited to the Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi point to the fact that he was doing all he could to please the north in anticipation that he will be favoured for the APC presidential ticket in 2023.
“The governor had gone to the extent of rejecting the resolution of the Southern Governors Forum on ban on open grazing and had recently prayed to God to give Nigeria another president like Muhammadu Buhari in 2023.
“He was also quoted to have rejected the court ruling that ordered states to collect Value Added Tax (VAT).
“All these, we sense, are clear patronage attempt to please the North at the expense of his people being killed by armed herdsmen with a view to enhancing his selfish ambition.
“It is a shame that the governor’s attempt to patronize northern interests was not strong enough to convince the northern governors to accept a power-shift that would pave way for him to emerge as APC presidential candidate as he may have anticipated.
“Therefore, our demand for a convincing explanation on reasons for Governor Umahi’s defection still subsists. We need to be convinced that he is on the right track”, the SERG stated.