Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi, met with President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday after his defection to the ruling party.
Umahi was at the Presidential Villa with some All Progressives Congress (APC) stalwarts after announcing his exit from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
APC Caretaker Chairman and Yobe State Governor, Mai Mala Buni formally presented him to Buhari.
In attendance were former Senate President, Ken Nnamani, Govenors Atiku Bagudu (Kebbi), Badaru Abubakar (Jigawa), among others.
Hours earlier, the governor told his supporters not to castigate federal legislators and others who did not defect with him.
National Assembly members of Ebonyi origin had distanced themselves from his desertion.
In Abakaliki during his official declaration, Umahi stated that Ebonyi is now 99.9 per cent APC.
He said the remaining 0.1 percent are PDP and predicted that those still in the opposition will eventually decamp.
“Do not castigate them because they are looking for something and will come back when they get it. They are my children and I love them very much as the father of the state,” he said in reference to the lawmakers and other non-defectors.
The governor thanked his appointees and supporters for believing in him.
He said the path he chose was best for Ebonyi and the South-East zone.
Umahi boasted that APC now has the Deputy Governor, Speaker of the House of Assembly, 110 executive council members, 1,200 executive assistants, senior technical assistants and technical assistants and 374 LGA liaison officers.
“We also have 400 members of boards and commissions, 560 LGA management committee members, 130 LGA supervisors, the entire chairmen of the 13 LGAs, party chairmen in the councils, legislators among others in this movement,” he said.
Umahi further advised Igbo political stakeholders to join the APC, the party controlling the federal government.
Meanwhile, Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has said Atiku Abubakar’s choice of Peter Obi as his running mate in the 2019 got his Ebonyi counterpart, Dave Umahi upset with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Wike said with Umahi’s defection to the All Progressives Congress (APC), he should be mindful of the political future of the South-East.
Speaking on a live broadcast, he said Umahi was livid because he wanted to produce or he wanted to be Vice President. You don’t choose who would be the Vice Presidential candidate of anybody. Umahi was livid. What disturbs me, why do you think that if anything comes to the South-East it must be you. Why do you think so?”
“If he believes in equity and justice, will he be doing such? It is because he has planted these people that the State House of Assembly had such effrontery to give the National Working Committee (NWC) ultimatum to zone presidency to the East. Where does such a thing happen? No other party has done any zoning. You can imagine the level of selfishness,” he noted.