HURIWA, the Nigerian Human Rights Writers Association, has warned Nigerians against backing Ebonyi State Governor Dave Umahi in his bid to become the country’s next president.
Umahi, who defected from the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, to join the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, had announced his intention to run for president in the 2023 general elections.
After meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari in Aso Rock Villa on Tuesday, the governor made his intentions clear while fielding questions from State House Correspondents.
“I told Mr President, that without prejudice to whatever the party’s decision will be, which we will abide by, that if the party throws the ticket open or zoned to the southern part of Nigeria, I believe that with what I’ve put in place in the past six years plus, that I’ll be running for president on the platform of the APC,” he said.
“So, I told him, and of course, he believes that anyone running for president of this country must consult widely, meet with all of the leaders, and do everything possible to eliminate ethnicity and religion from our politics.” “In order for this country to develop.”
In a chat on Wednesday, however, HURIWA’s National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, expressed fear of dictatorship, saying Umahi has no regard for press freedom.
Dave Umahi had ordered the arrest of many journalists in Ebonyi State, according to HURIWA, and urged media houses to ensure that the governor’s presidential ambitions were thwarted.
“HURIWA does not support Governor Dave Umahi’s presidential ambitions because he has terrible antecedents as a dictator and someone who is completely intolerant of free press,” he said.
“In this administration, he may be the governor who has ordered the arrest of more journalists than all previous military dictators combined.”
“It is the responsibility of the Nigerian media to ensure that Umahi does not become Nigerian President, because if he does, the media industry will be doomed.” Umahi will rule Nigeria in the manner of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un. Is that what we’re looking for? No”.