— Backs Traditional Rulers Decision On Nwifuru’s Endorsement For Governor
By Alo David, Abakaliki
The former Ebonyi State Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP), Chief Barr. Onyekachi Nwebonyi on Thursday, April 7th, 2022 announced his intention to contest for the position of the senate, Ebonyi North Senatorial district in the forthcoming election.
Nwebonyi however, declared his support to the speaker of Ebonyi State House of Assembly, Rt Hon Francis Ogbonna Nwifuru as the sole consensus governorship candidate of the Izhi people comprising of Abakaliki, Ebonyi and Izzi Local Government Area in 2023 general election.
This was made known to Journalists in Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, saying that the choice of the speaker was to affirm the collective decision of the traditional rulers and Council Chairmen who had earlier endorsed him for the position.
The former PDP Chieftain who is now Commissioner for Capital City and Urban Development under the Engr David Umahi led government of the All Progressives Congress, (APC) after his formal defection to the party solicited for massive support from his constituents as he promised to embark on youth empowerment and job creation if he emerged as the Senator representing Ebonyi North Zone.
“By the grace of God, I shall be running the Ebonyi North Senatorial Seat under the platform of the All Progressives Congress, APC,” he said.
He hinted that his consultations with the stakeholders from the zone of his ambition has gained a lot of support and maintained that the acceptability his people gave him encouraged the move.
He prayed God to crown his efforts as a full-fledged member of the APC who had paid his dues, using every opportunity given to him to work for the humanity.
“As a party chairman, I have been able to train some students through my scholarship scheme.
“I have been able to build houses for so many indigent people, empowering youth by way of giving them motorcycles to earn their living. I have given out many vehicles, grants and loans to start businesses of their choice. All these things are counting for me and by the glory of God we shall get there.”
Reacting to why he joined the APC instead of remaining in his former party, Nwebonyi noted that “You will agree with me that nothing is permanent in politics except interest, and even interest is not permanent.
“As Igbo people, we’ve seen that PDP doesn’t have Ndigbo on its agenda and we have to move to the APC. Before now, Ebonyians have agreed that APC is a better party and that’s why we followed our leader, the performing governor of Ebonyi State, Engr Chief David Nweze Umahi to join the APC.”
He further emphasized that his people have strong confidence that the APC is the party to beat in Ebonyi State come 2023, noting that the governor has given his aides who have an interest for any elective position to make it open.
On the possibility of the Izhi people’s agitation for the state governorship position and winning the senatorial seat in 2023, Nwebonyi explained that Ebonyi North Zone is made up of four local government areas including Abakaliki, Ebonyi, Izzi and Ohaukwu.
The senatorial seat, according to him, “moves around the four local government areas and not between the Izhi clan and Ohaukwu people,” pointing out that, his local government which is Ebonyi has never produced a senator representing Ebonyi North since the creation of the state.
He noted that Abakaliki local government area had produced three Senators including Senator Paulycarp Nwite, Senator Chris Nishi, and Senator Nguji Ngele, while Izzi LGA produced two senators – Senator Andrew Nwankwo and Senator Chris Nwankwo while Ohaukwu produced Senator Anthony Agbo, and his kinsman, Senator Sam Ominyi Egwu who is currently occupying the Ebonyi North Senatorial Seat for the second times.
He maintained that, “2023, is the turn of Ebonyi LGA to produce the Senator representing Ebonyi North Senatorial District,” in the spirit of fairness, equity and justice.”
Nwebonyi expressed his preparedness for the senatorial race, saying that he has the capacity, intellect, the people’s mandate, and all it takes to clinch the seat and unveiled that about 65 students are under his scholarship scheme, receiving monthly payments, ranging from one hundred thousand and two hundred fifty-thousand naira from him, with over 496 motorcycles distributed, and many houses built for the indigent people especially the widows.
He added that the Izhi people, the occupants of Abakaliki, Ebonyi and Izzi local government areas in Ebonyi North Senatorial Zone have concluded their zoning formula, and declared that “Izhi Nation will produce the next Ebonyi State governor, and it is the person of Rt Hon Francis Ogbonna Nwifuru. He is next to step into the shoe as the governor of Ebonyi State.”
He further said: “The kindred dichotomy that was a problem in Izhi land, is now a thing of the past, we are now more united than ever, and that is why with one voice we said, the cap fits Mr Speaker.”