I have nothing personal against Umahi — Okorie

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By Chukwuemeka Opara

Chief Linus Okorie, the Labour Party (LP) candidate for Ebonyi South Senatorial District in the last general election on Wednesday said he had no personal grudges against Gov. David Umahi.

He told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abakiliki that he was only pursuing his political ambitions.

NAN reports that Umahi and Okorie were political allies until Okorie nursed the ambition to contest for the Senatorial seat on the platform of LP.

They are currently engaged in a legal battle for the senatorial seat which was won by Umahi.

Okorie had filed a petition at the election tribunal against Umahi’s declaration as winner by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

However, Okorie’s action has not gone down well with Umahi who had expressed concern that one of his political allies was now challenging him.

However, Okorie, while acknowledging the role Umahi has played in his politics, told NAN that he also played a role in Umahi’s emergence as a governor in 2015.

“Umahi as the Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in 2010 was instrumental to my emergence as a House of Representatives member.

“I, my family and generations will always keep this in in mind; it can never be written off.

“It should however be noted that from 2008, I and the Odefas built the structure on which he emerged as the party chairman, deputy governor and subsequently governor.

“During my first stint at the House of Representatives, I had the privilege of having ears where it mattered,” he said.

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He told NAN that he raised the possibility of Umahi’s governorship in 2014 with the then Nigeria’s first family.

“I had the chance to run for the governorship then but sacrificed the ambition due to my love and loyalty to him.

“I fell out with him because he never wanted me to vie for the Senate as this cost me a return to the House of Representatives in 2019,” he alleged.

Okorie said that in spite of the prevailing circumstances, he still loved and wished Umahi well.

“I have benefitted tremendously from him but he has also benefited from me,” he said. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)

Edited by Uche Anunne

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