Governor Nyesom Wike has reacted to the defection of Governor David Umahi from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Wike who stated that they are not surprised with Umahi's defection, added that the Ebonyi state Governor left the PDP because he wants to be the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2023 and not injustice meted on the South East by the opposition party as claimed.
Noting that Governor Umahi has a right to move to the APC, Wike however averred that his Ebonyi counterpart was unfair to the opposition party which gave him its governorship ticket in 2015 against all odds and repeated the same feat in 2019.
“My friend, Umahi wants to be president. There is no problem with that. You have a right to be president. Nobody can stop you. You are educated. You have been a governor for two terms, so you are qualified to say I want to be president of Nigeria.
“But, that does not mean, that because you want to blackmail your party, and tell lies to the people you are leaving the party because of the injustice meted against the South-East, that is not correct."
Wike also asked the Ebonyi governor to retract his statement of PDP not being fair to the South-East, stressing that under the PDP, the South East has produced Senate Presidents, national vice party chairman, and Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF).
He also alleged that it was erroneous for Governor Umahi to accuse the PDP of injustice, when he had unilaterally ‘imposed’ his younger brother as South-East Zonal Vice Chairman of the PDP.
“In life, power is sweet, but conscience is important. It is most offensive and insulting for a man to lie against his party because of power.
“My reaction to Governor Umahi’s defection is not that he has no right to defect, but to say he is defecting because of injustice meted to the South East, that is insulting to the South East."
Also pointing out that the APC has not revealed where it will zone its presidential ticket, the Rivers state Governor urged the National Working Committee and the National Executive Committee of the PDP to take decisive steps to ensure the PDP does not die in Ebonyi State.