In a recent development, the Association of Ebonyi Indigenes Socio-Cultural in the Diaspora (AEISCID) has issued a challenge to Governor Francis Ogbonna Nwifuru, urging him to assert his authority and govern effectively or step down from his position. The diaspora group also expressed concerns about the alleged behind-the-scenes influence of the immediate-past governor, David Umahi, on the affairs of the state.
Ambassador Pascal Oluchchukwu, the President (World-wide) of AEISCID, released a statement on Tuesday in Abuja, highlighting the lack of visible governance since Governor Nwifuru’s inauguration. The group expressed disappointment over the absence of key appointments, including the formation of a kitchen cabinet, leaving the electorate in the dark about the direction of the state.
Furthermore, AEISCID called upon the Inspector General of Police to immediately withdraw the security team attached to former Governor Umahi. The group also urged anti-graft agencies to conduct a thorough investigation into Umahi’s administration during his time as governor of Ebonyi State.
In the statement, Ambassador Pascal Oluchchukwu said, “We are aware that though the March 18th, 2023 Governorship election is being challenged by both oppositions People’s Democratic Party, PDP, and the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, and their Governorship candidates at the Election Petition Tribunal now sitting in Abuja, INEC as an electoral umpire had declared Nwifuru, the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC candidate, Rt. Hon. Nwifuru as the ‘winner’ and he was consequently sworn-in to office.”
The AEISCID statement continued, “About one week after he took oath of office at the Abakaliki Township stadium, we are astonished that the Ebonyi electorates are yet to see any visible signs of governance, not even the appointment of his kitchen cabinet members. Rather, this group has been reading reports that his predecessor, Umahi, has still been inspecting works at the sites of some yet-to-be-completed projects in the State.”
AEISCID expressed concern that Umahi had allegedly been retaining his security aides and convoy, even after handing over the affairs of governance in Ebonyi State. The group highlighted an incident where Umahi purportedly attempted to influence the appointment of the next Secretary to the Ebonyi State Government, a move that was reportedly rejected by Governor Nwifuru.
The statement further revealed, “Those close to happenings in the last few hours before Umahi’s supposed official handover to Nwifuru said that explained the former’s anger and reason for being late to the Abakaliki Township stadium venue of the event and also for breaching official protocols during the inauguration ceremony and storming out of the venue even before his successor took oath of office and allegiance.”
AEISCID concluded its statement by challenging Governor Nwifuru to assume full responsibility for governance and operate effectively like his counterparts in Enugu and Abia States. The group also called for the Inspector General of Police, the Director General of DSS, and the Chief of Army Staff to withdraw their officers and men from Umahi, in order to prevent potential security breaches and a constitutional crisis in the state.
“As a group concerned about good governance and the enthronement of a democratic process cum progress of our dear State, AEISCID is disturbed that democracy may derail in Ebonyi