AESID laments rising poverty among Ebonyi indigenes under Umahi
The Association of Ebonyi Indigenes in the Diaspora (AESID) has expressed concern over rising level of poverty among the people of the state.
President of AESID, Ambassador Paschal Oluchukwu, in a statement, yesterday, lamented that it was not surprising that the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) officially rated Ebonyi State as the poverty capital of the South East region.
The group blamed the situation on insecurity in the state over the years, insisting that Governor Dave Umahi should render account of his stewardship since he assumed office as governor.
“As we speak, thousands of Ebonyi indigenes, who were displaced by communal clashes in Effium, Ohaukwu Council of the state are yet to return to their homes, not to talk of getting any assistance from the Umahi administration.
“The victims, who were also displaced in three communities of Ezza North Council, where he is spending public funds in building an International Cargo Airport, remain displaced, as the state government has yet to compensate them. The Umahi government has weaponised hunger and poverty, so that all might come to beg for crumbs on his table,” the statement reads.
The group wondered what impact the Umahi administration had made in the state’s education sector since it had been classified as educationally less developed, adding that the health and agricultural sectors were not better due to poor maternal mortality rate and untapped potential of its agriculture sector.
“What about the state’s civil service he has left in its shadows, including lecturers in the state-owned tertiary institutions whose salaries he has withheld and pays any pittance as he feels like?
“Is it the retirees, some of who have died due to non-payment of their entitlements or their grieving family members that will support Umahi’s touted 2023 presidential ambition?” it asked.
“Rather than provide jobs for Ebonyi people, the Umahi government specialises in appointing (through proxies) youths, who sing its praises on the social media for some pittance,” it added.
The group, therefore, restated its belief that it was time for Umahi to be held accountable for the opportunity he has had in one of the 36 states of the country for which he is now aspiring to be president.
The group expressed reservations over Umahi’s presidential ambition under the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2023 elections, maintaining that Umahi, who did not support the Atiku Abubakar/Peter Obi presidential ticket of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in 2019 on the pretext that he was not consulted, is now towing the same path.