By Ikeugonna Eleke
The Senator representing Anambra Central Senatorial Zone, Chief Victor Umeh, has accused the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, of using the name of President Muhammadu Buhari to deceive the people of the state.
Umeh who spoke to journalists in Awka at the weekend said Ngige had been going about dropping the President’s name as the one urging him to vie for a seat in the senate on the premise that he would be made the senate president.
Ngige had previous weekend told journalists that he was under pressure to vie for the senatorial position, and that he would make his declaration open soon, as to whether he would contest or not.
But Umeh, while countering Ngige on his claims that he was being pressures to run, said anyone was free to contest with him.
‘Ngige told some people that the president told him to vie so he becomes Senate president, and told some traditional rulers that he was under pressure from some Igbo leaders to vie.
‘He has been going about telling different people different things. He is simply dropping the President’s name and using it to deceive many people,’ Umeh said.
Asked if he would stand for primary election in his party, as against allegation that in 2015, he simply gave himself the ticket of the party as a parting gift after his tenure as national chairman of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, he said, ‘I will buy the form and contest for the ticket of the party, and anyone is free to contest against me too.
‘I can tell you that Governor Obiano has not blessed anyone, people are dropping Obiano’s name same way Ngige is dropping the President’s name.’
He said he had been approached many times by his colleagues since the recent gale of defection hit the Nigerian political space, but he had stuck to his gun, insisting on remaining in APGA.
The senator also spoke against vote buying in election, saying that it posed serious risk to democracy, but stated that the trend was occasioned by the level of poverty in the country.
‘This government promised to fight poverty, but that has not happened. We (Senate) can legislate against vote buying, but a hungry man must eat. The level of requests I receive everyday from my constituents paints the picture of poverty in the land, and people must eat,’ the senator said.