A group, known as Coalition of Civil Society Groups on the Ebonyi Project, has vowed to expose Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi’s alleged deceitful, anti-democratic and dictatorial excesses in the state.
The groups, which said it was poised to unearth the governor’s anti-social and economic oppression of all categories of all workers in the state, pointed out that it was high time this was done, in order to let Nigerians know that the state had been turn into a slave camp.
Ebonyi State Coordinator of the Coalition, Chief Abia Onyike, stated this in a statement, on Sunday, saying no civil servant in the state, had been paid his gratuities for six years now, since Umahi became the governor.
According to the statement, which was made available to Akelicious on Sunday evening, “Plans have reached an advanced stage to commence an organised opposition and containment against Governor David Umahi’s deceitful/hydra-headed and monstrous anti-democratic regime of impunity in Ebonyi state.
“A Civil-Society Coalition, made up of Human Rights/Media Organizations, Labour/Professional Unions and Student Groups have signed up to come together and use all legal and legitimate means to checkmate Gov. David Umahi’s abuse of human rights, oppression and lawlessness in Ebonyi state. Umahi is known to have used his high office to abuse the social and economic rights of all categories of public sector workers in Ebonyi state.
“The coalition will expose the untold atrocities of Gov. Umahi and let all Nigerians know that he is running a slave camp in Ebonyi state whose inmates are getting tired of suffering from untold hardship. He has held on to the gratuities of retired civil servants since he came into office six years ago. Workers in the state civil service are denied promotions and when they are promoted, the financial benefits are seized by the orders of Umahi. He has no respect to the statutory rights of public and retired officers. Umahi’s extreme wickedness and callousness has caused the instalmental but silent deaths of many of these officers who were forced to starve untill they passed away.
“The Civil Society Coalition has investigated Gov. Umahi’s subterranean infiltration into opposition political parties, the bullying of his critics and the intimidation of the Judiciary/Judiciary staff which manifested in the recent interrogation of a Magistrate in the State Judiciary for granting bail to an official of an opposition political party. Umahi must drop his secret and open sponsorship of political hirelings to undermine rival political parties in the state. It is an act of political criminality for democratically elected leaders to spend public funds to undermine the legitimate existence of opposition political parties in a democratic society.
“Umahi’s penchant for creating crisis in opposition parties,(an ignoble act which he himself voices, acknowledges and even boasts about) is a sign of his political bankruptcy. Recall that Gov. Umahi sometime in 2020 stated openly that he will sponsor crisis in the opposition party and while the crisis persists, he will be sipping his Champagne. These are the issues the Civil Society Coalition will deal with because Umahi must be made answer to certain ethical and moral questions as a leader in a democratic dispensation. The Coalition will drag him to the Court of Public Opinion to checkmate his excesses so that he doesn’t get away with the impression that he presided over a banana republic.
“The Civil Society Coalition would invoke the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act to compell Gov. Umahi to give account of his stewardship in Ebonyi state.”
But in a swift reaction, the All Progressives Congress in the state, described the issues raised by the Coalition, which, he noted was a faceless one, as trumped up.
The Caretaker Committee Chairman of the APC, in the state, Chief Stanley Okoro-Emegha, said the ‘faceless’ Coalition, led by Onyike, was looking for subtle ways of launching itself into the political space, adding the only it was trying to achieve, was to cast the Ebonyi State Government, led by Umahi, in bad light.
The APC boss said, “We know Abia Onyike and what he represents. He is looking for cheap publicity and political relevance since he was sacked by the governor, before the 2019 elections. One, he was too lazy and could not fit into the scheme of things in the governor’s approach to governance. Two, he was a sellout and always maintained dubious tendencies. How could anybody, in his right mind-frame, work with such a person? We pity the groups Onyike is working for and those, sponsoring him. Umahi’s policies and programmes are executed in transparency and there’s nothing to be afraid of.”