The Ebonyi state Coordinator of Friends of Atiku (FOA) and member representing Ohaozara/Onicha/Ivo Federal constituency in the National Assembly, Linus Abaa Okorie, has insisted that the Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party(PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar will floor his All Progressives Congress (APC) counterpart, Muhammadu Buhari in Ebonyi State during the Presidential election coming up next month.
Okorie said Ebonyians love Atiku and his running mate, Mr. Peter Obi, and would vote massively for them in February irrespective of any political intrigues being cooked up in some quarters in the state.
He made the statement in Abakaliki on Wednesday while reacting to a statement credited to governor David Umahi wherein the governor was quoted as saying that he (Okorie) destroyed the billboards in his Friends of Atiku Campaign Office in the state to attract attention to himself.
The governor was said to have made the statement on Tuesday while swearing in new members of his cabinet at the Government House in Abakaliki.
The lawmaker described the comments credited to the governor as most uncharitable and unexpected of a man occupying the exalted office of the governor, stating that the governor knows that he didn’t need such cheap tricks to be popular in a state he has been a major stakeholder and player in the past 20 years even as he played a major role to make him governor in 2015.
Okorie expressed shock that the governor did not condemn the destruction of billboards of the Presidential candidate of his party in his state but chose to capitalise on the incident to launch underserved attack on him.
He however said he was happy that the governor has for the first time mentioned the name of the PDP presidential candidate and called on the governor and indeed all stakeholders in the state to team up with Friends of Atiku in the state to deliver the PDP candidate and his running mate come February 16 .
“I was convinced that the governor was misquoted when I read a line where he was quoted as saying that I destroyed the billboards just to draw attention to myself and my activities in the State. This is most uncharitable and unexpected from the occupant of the exalted office of a governor and who knows me too well and fully aware that I don’t need such cheap tricks to be popular in a State I have been a major stakeholder and player in the past 20 years. Neither do I need to destroy my own campaign materials to gain the governor’s attention when indeed my role in his 2015 governorship ascension are well known to all Ebonyians and remain indelible.
“I am deeply concerned that the governor did not condemn the unwarranted destructive attack on the campaign office of the Presidential candidate of his party, but instead chose to use the opportunity of the incident to launch such an obnoxious attack on me. May it not be that the further attacks said to be planned against the office are still afoot.
“I am, however, satisfied that the governor has finally spoken on the matter and publicly commented on the candidacy of our Presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.
“I now passionately appeal to him and all stakeholders of our party, the PDP in the State, to join the Friends of Atiku in intensifying efforts to deliver our candidate come February 16, 2019. I am also looking forward to seeing the governor’s Divine Mandate campaign vehicles and materials branded with the images of Atiku and Obi.
“What is most gratifying is that Ebonyians are determined to massively vote the Atiku/Obi ticket irrespective of any intrigues and high wire politicking”