*Photo: Fani-Kayode *
The All Progressives Party (APC) Chieftain, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode, has defended Enugu State Governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, on allegations bordering on financial impropriety.
Fani-Kayode, in a statement made available to journalists in Abuja, described the allegations that Ugwuanyi looted public funds to acquire many property as “wild and baseless allegations.”
“Even though we are now in different political parties I can always vouch for the integrity and decency of one of my dearest friends and brothers, Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu state.
“The wild and baseless allegations of financial impropriety being peddled about him all over the social media and the list of properties that he supposedly acquired whilst in office are fake, false and totally unbecoming of the identifiable individual that is sponsoring them.
“I was mortified and disgusted by these cruel and vile allegations about a profoundly good man and I am constrained to stand up and speak out for my brother. That is what friends are for,” he said.
He said though he is in APC while the governor is in Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), “in any case when you see a lie, you have a duty before man and God to expose it for what it is and shoot it down.
“That is decency and justice and it does not matter whether you and the object or target of such perfidious mendacities are on the same side of the political divide or not.
“Premeditated venal and vicious lies coupled with a heavy dosage of libel and slander against our fellow human beings, particularly when they are our compatriots, diminish us all.”
Fani-Kayode urged Nigerians to eschew the politics of hate, bitterness and division and renounce those that seek to destroy the names and hard- earned reputations of others simply because they see them as an obstacle to achieving their political aspirations.
“Simply because you want to be the next Governor of Enugu state does not mean that you must defame and slander a good man.
“This is all the more so when you are in the same political party as he is.
“I have immense respect for Governor Ugwuanyi and even though we disagree on political party affiliation, I always will,” he said.
He called on the governor to renounce his membership from PDP and join the APC.
“There is nothing that I did not do or say to try to get him to leave the PDP and join the APC but he simply refused to do so.
“I respect his decision and the fact that we are in different parties does not mean that I cannot vouch for him when others in his own party are trying to destroy him.
“I pray that those behind this vicious and callous smear campaign against the Governor come to terms with the fact that it does not serve them well to attempt to disgrace or destroy one of the brightest stars in the East and indeed Nigeria.
“I really do wonder how they sleep at night.
“May God help us all and protect us from evil and destructive men who are prepared to do anything to achieve power.
“Who the cap fits, let him wear it!
“Finally let me take this opportunity to make yet another appeal to Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi to leave the PDP and to join the APC.
“May God continue to lead, guide, defend and protect you my brother.
“Even though we are in different political parties we shall always remain brothers and my respect for you continues to go from strength to strength.
“That is what you call “politics without bitterness,” he concluded.