Ebonyi State governor, Martin Elechi, was conspicuously sidelined at President Goodluck Jonathan’s campaign rally in the state on Friday.
The governor, who has lost control of the Peoples Democratic Party structure in his state, was not given an opportunity to speak at the rally, which held at the Abakaliki Township Stadium.
Elechi was scheduled to speak on item nine of the official programme of the rally, but for undisclosed reasons, he was not called upon to speak throughout the event, where the national chairman of the PDP, Adamu Muazu, handed the party’s flag to the governorship candidate in the state, Dave Umahi. Umahi is Elechi’s deputy.
Elechi’s loyalists, who did not participate in primaries where Umahi emerged as the governorship candidate, had reportedly moved to the Labour Party.
Elechi was also booed at the event by a section of the mammoth crowd which turned out for the rally.
The development must have prompted his predecessor, former governor, Sam Egwu, to speak up for him (Elechi), urging everybody to remember that the governor remained the leader of the party in the state and therefore deserved respect.
Egwu said, “We have a leader in this state and that is why Ebonyi has peaceful people – they are people that respect culture, they are people that respect authority, they are people that when their leaders speak they hear him.
“I want to ask you please, no matter your personal grievances, we have a governor that is in charge of the state, he is our governor and you must as a matter of principle and authority respect him.”