Two members of the House of Representatives of Ebonyi State; Laz Ogbee and Anayo Nwonu, on Monday, refused to collaborate with other members of the National Assembly to form the “Abuja Group” to fight and stop the governor, David Umahi, from producing a successor in 2023.
Ogbee represents the electoral district of Ikwo / Ezza South Federal, while Nwonu represents the electoral district of Ezza North / Ishielu in the National Assembly.
In their separate statements issued in Abakaliki, the two legislators frowned on the accusations, which they said were invented to blur their integrity, cause disaffection and heat up the state’s politics.
The meeting, which allegedly took place in a hotel along the Bisala road, Abuja, according to social media publications, allegedly attended by Senator Obinna Ogba (Ebonyi Central); Ogbee, Nwonu; Chief Elias Mbam, Ogbonnaya Onu, Sylvester Ogbaga and the current deputy governor of the state, Dr. Kelechi Igwe, among others.
Ogbee said there was no such meeting and no individual or group approached him to discuss Umahi’s successor.
The legislator, who described Governor Umahi as a team player, noted that it was not charitable for an individual to talk about the next governor of the state, since that would distract the giant steps of the Umahi administration.
Ogbee said: “No meeting took place anywhere, it is the product of your imagination, the accusation was a malicious, unthinkable and cheap propaganda invented to defame my integrity, it is a lie, the abyss of hell.”
Proponents of this propaganda malicious and vicious simply wanted to cause disaffection among some members of the National Assembly and our leader, Governor David Umahi.It was a stratagem to paint myself in black as fighting against the governor of the state, but the wrongdoers failed.
“Anyone who talks about who will be the next governor of our beloved state, wants to mainly distract the good deeds of our governor, and no individual or group has consulted me to discuss who or how the next governor will emerge.”
“We are proud of the governor for what he is doing in the state and I know him as a team player. When the time comes to choose his successor, I know that he will consult all the interested parties and relevant leaders of our beloved state, as he has always done in critical matters of such importance.
“My relationship with the governor is a bond of love, unity and loyalty. When I became president of the local government of Ezza South, I was the first president of the council to openly and publicly support Governor David Umahi’s ambition as governor in 2015, against the election of incumbent governor Martin Elechi.
“What is happening now is that some disgruntled opposition elements who know the pedigree and the outstanding performance of the governor want to reduce it by inventing these lies just to write down some cheap political points and put most of us in a situation of error,” insinuated Ogbee .
For his part, Nwonu said that no discerning mind would take the accusation seriously, since the intention was only to warm the policy and cause disaffection among the main stakeholders in the state.
“The few members of the opposition party in the state want to cause an infraction between us. They want to create an atmosphere where some people are considered to be fighting against the state government. I have not even met the people mentioned in a round table since this year. The accusation is cheap and never existed, “he said.