The Ebonyi Council of Traditional Rulers on Wednesday said that President Muhammadu Buhari will get the support of many voters in Ebonyi state during the February 16th Presidential elections.
The traditional rulers also endorsed the state Governor, David Umahi for a second term.
This is even as President Buhari expresses satisfaction that the impact of federal government projects were being felt in Ebonyi State.
Chairman of Traditional Rulers Council, Eze Charles Mkpuma, said Buhari is loved by the people because of the robust relationship he has with governor Umahi despite the fact that they belong to different parties.
They said that this will translate to more votes for the president on election day.
They gave the assurance during an audience with the President at the Ebonyi State Government House In Abakaliki.
Mkpuma who commended Buhari’s determination to tackle the security situation of the country especially in his efforts in tackling terrorism and fight against corruption said Buhari was deserving of their votes irrespective of party differences.
The monarch who spoke on behalf of 140 traditional rulers in the state said the President has done well in the fight against Boko Haram and second corruption.
“We appreciate your dogged determination to maintain utmost security of the country especially your effort in eliminating Boko Haram and fight against corruption which has brought respect and integrity to the country among committee of nations.
“We believe that your robust relationship with our son the governor and your loved for him and the state will surely earn you votes in Ebonyi state irrespective of party differences.”, the monarch said.
Mkpuma, said the traditional rulers are happy with the leadership of the governor, David Umahi, who has virtually touched every facet of human and infrastructural development of the state, adding “we the traditional rulers like other residents of the state have been rejuvenated and revived by the governor.
They told the President that Umahi deserves a second term for the sake of equity as the two former governors before him from other zones also had two tenures.
“Since the inception of the present democratic dispensation, Ebonyi state has operated rotation of the governorship seat among the three senatorial zones. Thus North had eight years with the same man, central had two terms with same man and south is entitled to eight years with the same man.
“It is right and proper that tradition should continue. This is why we have endorsed incumbent governor David Umahi whose performance has been historic and superlative as the sole candidate for 2019 gubernatorial election in Ebonyi state. We are happy with the governor. He has touched every facet of human and infrastructural development of the state”, Mpkuma said.
The monarchs later presented 1,000 yams and 1,000 bags to Buhari.
President Buhari, on his part, commended the governor for infrastructural development in the state.
He promised that monies spent on the completion of the federal projects will be refunded after the review committee would have audited the projects.
According to him, Umahi told him during their short drive to the government house, that he had not received up to 40 percent of the funds spent on federal projects in the state, but assured him the monies will be refunded once the audit committee headed by the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, conclude its work.
He also told the traditional rulers that his administration’s plans to invest in agriculture was deliberate, recalling that the First Republic was good in agriculture, because the land was abundant and grazing routes developed.
According to him, “But subsequently we got drunk with oil money and abandoned what kept us intact. But we are going back to that (agriculture).”
He assured the monarchs that the south-east will benefit from second Niger Bridge when completed and it will affect you positively in moving goods and services.
He urged them that his second return will be of benefit to them as he will not be seeking a third return.
The governor of Ebonyi State, David Umahi in his remarks said irrespective of some perceptions, the south-east have benefited from federal government projects.
He added that the federal government’s agricultural programme has benefited the state immensely which has resulted in increase in rice production.
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