Umahi’s defection: Southeast to be fully integrated into the progressives’ fold ― APC Governors

Governors on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) have commended their colleague in Ebonyi, David Umahi who on Thursday formally defected from the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) to APC.

Kebbi State governor and chairman of the Forum of APC Governors, the Progressives Governors’ Forum, Abubakar Atiku Bagudu in a statement said the action of his counterpart was a testament to the ruling party capacity to mobilise all Nigerians.

Governor Bagudu who commended Governor Umahi decision to abandon the PDP despite pressures on him claimed that with Thursday historic defection by the Ebonyi State governor, the south-east geopolitical zone would be fully integrated into the rank of the progressives in the country.

The statement read in part: “The vision of the founding fathers of our legacy parties is for the APC to serve as a platform to unite all Nigerians under a progressive umbrella. With Chief Umahi now in APC, the vision is further reinforced and shall contribute to the process of membership and leadership recruitment at all levels.

“It is heartwarming that notwithstanding all the fabricated campaigns against the APC and especially our leader, President Muhammadu Buhari, Chief Umahi is able to make the bold decision to join our party, based on our performance.

This is a strong acknowledgement of Mr President’s credentials as a fair leader with a balanced and equitable disposition to issues of justice and impartial politics. We especially congratulate our leader, President Muhammadu Buhari and reaffirm our commitment to support him to build our party, APC, as a strong and democratic political party in the country.

“We also congratulate our leaders in APC National Caretaker Extraordinary/Convention Planning Committee under the able leadership of HE Mai Mala Buni for yet another historic accomplishment of winning an illustrious and experienced leader in the person of HE David Umahi. We especially welcome our fellow compatriots for taking the courageous and historic step of leaving the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) to the progressives’ fold.

The movement of our compatriot to the APC, despite all manners of intimidation, harassment and persecution by his former party is worthy of commendation and is indicative of his strong personal principles, commitment and conviction to the progress of Nigeria.

“Indeed, considering the nature of achievements recorded in Ebonyi State since 2015, Chief Umahi couldn’t have been in any other party but the APC. If anything, we are only welcoming Chief Umahi home where he belongs; to the party that will provide him and his people, and indeed all Nigerians the viable platform for political aspirations and negotiations. Together with Chief Umahi and all our leaders in the APC, we are confident that our party’s capacity to serve the collective interests of all Nigerians through effective representation will be strengthened.

“By coming into the fold of the progressives, Chief Umahi has opted for open, transparent and honest contestation in politics, which is the overarching commitment of President Muhammadu Buhari and all our founding leaders. Our National Caretaker Extraordinary/Convention Planning Committee is working to ensure the institution of a solid foundation for our democratic development as a party. We are confident that the National Caretaker Extraordinary/Convention Planning Committee will soon release a detailed programme of activities leading to the National Convention.

Together with Chief Umahi, we shall forge stronger partnership to mobilise all patriotic and other like-minded progressive Nigerians to join us in APC to enhance our capacity as a party to respond and resolve all our democratic challenges.

Our message to all Nigerians is clear – politics is all about free, fair and transparent contestation. APC belongs to every member. Everyone, from every part of the country, is free to aspire for any position in the party in line with provisions of our party’s constitution and the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.

The guiding philosophy as enshrined in the provisions of our manifesto is economic, social and political development of Nigeria.

“The Progressive Reinforcement of our party has started. Guided by our Caretaker Extraordinary/Convention Planning Committee, we look forward to receiving more patriotic and progressive-minded Nigerians into our party, APC! ”

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