The Governor of Ebonyi state, Chief David Umahi has called on the All Progressives Congress, APC, Ebonyi state chapter, to look for another venue for their political rally earlier scheduled to take place at the state stadium on Saturday.
Umahi said that the Abakaliki township stadium is under reconstruction and it’s a no-go area for the opposition, especially the APC which, according to him, was divided along two factions.
Investigation revealed that the APC has been claiming that they secured the approval of the state government before now to make use of the stadium for their political rally in honour of President Muhammadu Buhari in Ebonyi state.
But the Governor, speaking through his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Emmanuel Uzor when members of Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, SWAN, Ebonyi state chapter paid a courtesy visit to the Government House in Abakaliki, insisted that the stadium cannot be used for political rally until reconstruction works are over.
He said, “As per the rally by one of the factions of the APC, I make bold to say that there would be no approval for political activity in the stadium that is undergoing reconstruction. The reason being that Abakaliki township stadium now Pa Ngele Oruta township stadium, as you all know, has being under reconstruction. As I’m talking to you now, the asphalting of the back of the stadium is ongoing.
“And the state governor just came back from China, he brought some investors who are coming to look into the stadium and know how they can upgrade it to more international standard.
“And any political activity that is scheduled to hold there, especially by a political party that is divided along two different strange lines, will jeopardize the reconstruction work that is ongoing in that stadium.
“We believe in accommodating all different voices especially the opposition in the state. We don’t want to stifle any opposition. Those with credible integrity that want to do anything, are free to do it but as for the stadium, if you noticed, the state government has not done any programme there for sometime now because of the work that is ongoing there.
“I want to use this opportunity to tell the faction of APC that the earlier they start looking for alternative, the better for them. Of cause, they have their own stadium which is at Nkwoagu Ugbala. We are doing this, not because they are opposition, after all, how many are they? but because the stadium is undergoing reconstruction and that place is a no-go area”
The Governor also blamed the former governor of Ebonyi state, Chief Martin Elechi for allegedly ‘murdering’ sports activities for eight years in the state.
But in a swift reaction, the APC spokesperson, Mr. Chika Nwoba insisted that nothing will stop them from using the stadium for the political rally scheduled to hold this Saturday.
“We are going to make use of the stadium for our political rally on Saturday and there is no two ways about it,” he stated.