APC getting stronger in S’East despite LP onslaught – Umahi
From Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja
Governor of Ebonyi State, Dave Umahi, has said despite the string of successes recorded by the Labour Party (LP) in the recent presidential and National Assembly elections in the Southeast, the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) is getting stronger in the region.
He spoke to State House Correspondents on Tuesday at the State House, Abuja after he met with President Muhammadu Buhari.
Umahi, who emerged Senator-elect in the elections, noted that his State, Ebonyi, APC recorded significant successes because of the strength of the party.
He further noted that while the Labour Party has no gubernatorial candidate in the forthcoming governorship election in the State, even if there was one, the APC will still win the election because of the quality of candidate fielded.
He said: “I will first of all like to analyse my state and maybe talk about other states, you know we are going to have governorship election in only three states and House of Assembly election in five states.
“For my state, I have nothing to worry about, I think God has done the work for me and our candidate, which is God-driven candidate, is going to emerge, no matter how desperate the opposition will want to try.
“First and foremost is that Mr Peter Obi has announced that there is no Labour Party gubernatorial candidate in Ebonyi State. That is one, but even if the candidate stands election, he’s no match for the candidate of the APC, so I’m very sure that we’re going to win.
“Because I’ve been very busy in Ebonyi State, it’s not been very much easy for me to join gubernatorial campaign in Enugu State or in Abia State, so I won’t be able to honestly analyse what are the chances of our party, but I believe that we have very strong candidates, especially in Abia State and I believe that he will emerge. This is the much I can say about that.”
Asked the chances of the Southeast in the composition of the leadership of the 10th National Assembly, in view of his interest, Umahi said that every geopolitical zone would be given a fair chance when the time comes for that.
He stressed that the President-elect, Bola Tinubu, had directed incoming National Assembly members to step down the issue of parliamentary leadership tussle until after the governorship and State Assembly polls next Saturday.
“I’m a party man and very committed to decent process, the party and, of course, the President-elect directed that we shouldn’t talk about that yet, we should all go back and work for gubernatorial and State House of Assembly elections and I want to obey that directive not to talk about it.
“But I believe strongly that zoning must be done by the party, the party should not allow everybody to jump into the race and then in doing zoning, when the time comes, they must look at all the parameters so that we can carry all the regions along, this is very important, but I won’t want to say further because the party directed we shouldn’t talk about it until we have done our elections. Just be assured that APC is getting very strong in the Southeast.”
Umahi thanked Buhari for naming the newly completed medical school in Ebonyi State after him (Umahi); to invite him for commissioning of infrastructure projects in the State; including the new Ebonyi airport, which he also wants the Federal Government to take over; as well to seek approval for conversion of Akanu Ibiam Polytechnic to a University of Science and Technology.