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We are still PDP members, Umahi insists; as Ebonyi plans N3bn rehabilitation scheme for hawkers

Gov. Dave Umahi of Ebonyi State
Gov. Dave Umahi of Ebonyi State

The Ebonyi State Governor, Chief Eng. David Nweze Umahi, has once again restated his resolve to retain his membership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Governor Umahi was reacting to the speculations in a section of the media that he was set to move to the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) when the leadership of the Abakpa Main Market Traders Association, at the Government House in Abakaliki on Thursday.
He said, “When I said publicly that Ebonyi people will support Mr. President, they said, we have moved to the APC. PDP remains our party and will remain our party.
“But we need help and the way to get it is not to start castigating the President and no governor should castigate the President. But opposition belongs to the political parties. For me and you, we are still bonafide members of the PDP.”
On the increasing wave of the activities of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Governor Umahi stated that the South-East governors had listened to the complaints of the IPOB agitators and had decided to discuss them with the President.
“We have listened to the complaints of the boys. There is no way anybody could say that what they are saying is completely outside the truth, but just like husband and wife, you must have a way of getting along through dialogue.
“The governors of the South-East have taken up their matter to discuss with Mr. President and I believe that we don’t need another war in this country. I want to plead with you to encourage whoever is involved that we have taken up the matter and we will do everything possible to make sure that their feelings are addressed.
“We should not support secession. We should not support demonstrations; we should not support the castigation of our leaders”.
Governor Umahi maintained that his government was poised to redefining Abakaliki by looking inwards on how to take advantage of its location as a transit point to “realize our potential.”
Urging the traders to key into the vision of his administration, he stated that the first batch of traders would be relocated to the International Market in April 2016.
According to him, the second batch will be relocated in June while the third and final batches will be in September.
He further announced that the government would be constructing additional vehicular parks and warehouses beside the Centenary City, opposite the International Market as a measure to minimize the inconveniences that traders might face when they move into the International Market.
Earlier in an address, the Chairman of AMMTA, Comrade Emeka Nwome, commended the governor on his life touching achievements within six months in office.
Comrade Nwome informed the Governor that the traders had named him Ome nke ahuru nanya. Meanwhile, the Ebonyi State Government is to budget N3 billion for the rehabilitation of Ebonyi indigenes hawking in major cities of Lagos, Onitsha, Port Harcourt, Aba and other parts of the country.
This was part of the resolution reached during this week’s state Executive Council meeting in Abakaliki, the state capital.
Briefing newsmen at the end of the meeting, the Commissioner for Information and State Orientation, Senator Emmanuel Onwe, said the Special Advisor to the Governor, Lagos Liaison Office, Mrs Jacinta Nworie, had been redeployed and re-assigned as SA on Talent Development.
Mrs Nworie, according to him, has been charged with the responsibility of conducting census of the hawkers with a view to rehabilitating them.
He said, “The SA on Lagos Liaison Office is to immediately be redeployed by the Secretary to State Government and to be relocated or reassigned to the office of the SSG. Her position is to be redesignated as SA on Talent Development in the Department of Talent Development. Her responsibility would be, first to conduct a comprehensive census of all Ebonyi indigenes who are hawking in the major cities, like, Lagos, Onitsha, Port Harcourt,Aba and elsewhere.
“Once such comprehensive census is taken,it is the resolution of EXCO to make a budget of N3 billion to begin a rehabilitation process of all Ebonyians who are engaged in the disgraceful and humiliating activities of hawking on the highways in major cities of Lagos,Port Harcourt,Onitsha and so on”.
The commissioner also disclosed that the Executive Council terminated a contract awarded for the provision of electricity at the Federal Teaching Hospital, FETHA 2 in Abakaliki.
He said that his Power counterpart, Chief Emmanuel Uguru, was given one week to take over the contract and complete it for commissioning.

The council also banned the sell of used cable wires in the state and advised those selling such to get approval from the Commissioner for Power to avoid being charged to court.

Senator Onwe explained that this was part of the measures taken to avert the stealing or vandalism of cable wires in the state.

Also , the council directed those lobbying to replace the retired permanent secretaries to stop doing so as governor was not in a hurry to appoint new ones.

Onwe added that the council banned government functionaries and civil servants from attending private functions scheduled for Fridays.

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