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Deputy Speaker, Kalu, dismisses report of fight with South-East governors



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The Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Benjamin Kalu, on Monday, dismissed a media report of a rift between himself and governors of South East states of Abia, Enugu, Anambra, Imo and Ebonyi over the Peace in South East Project unveiled in Bende, last week.

A national daily had reported on Sunday that the launch of PISE-P, a brainchild of Kalu, may have placed him on a warpath with the governors and the Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo worldwide.

Reacting to the publication in a statement issued by his Chief Press Secretary, Levinus Nwabughiogu on Sunday, Kalu, who represents Bende Federal Constituency, Abia State, described the report as a sponsored attempt to dent his image.

The statement read in part: “It is rather unfortunate that in a move that smacks of lack of patriotism and support for the pursuit of peace and tranquility of a region hitherto enmeshed in violence, a plethora of sponsored gibberish are coming up both on conventional news platforms and online medium, all aimed at casting aspersions on the person and the office of the Deputy Speaker for championing a worthy cause.

“In quick succession to the event, a national newspaper on Sunday, December 31, 2023 went on a wild goose chase, perhaps, on envy spree, publishing a heresy, more of a distillation of garbage called news, saying that the launch of PISE-P has put the Deputy Speaker, House of Representatives, Benjamin Kalu, the Governors of the five eastern states and the Ohaneze Ndi Igbo worldwide on a warpath.

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“It also said that Kalu is on a chase with Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo State over who controls the south east politics in the ruling All Progressives Congress.

“This is to say the least, a hogwash, fabrication of lies that passes for tales by moonlight. At best, it is the figment of the overheated imagination of the author of the report.

“As a true son of Igbo land, Kalu is very much concerned and greatly distressed by the security challenges that had bedeviled the south eastern geopolitical hemisphere of the country for a while now,” adding that “What is expected of any son of the soil and the occupant of an office such as his, is to galvanize the people and deploy the influence of his office to find the panacea for the travails of the zone, and this is precisely what Kalu has done and still doing with PISE-P.”

Nwabughiogu noted that as a demonstration of support for the Kalu-led initiative, prominent Nigerians including.the Vice President, Kashim Shettima who represented President Bola Tinubu, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Tajudeen Abbas, Deputy Senate President Jubrin Barau, the five Governors of the Five South Eastern States, Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Nnaemeka Achebe, Ooni of Ife Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, Emir of Bichi, Nasiru Ado Bayero as well as the President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu graced the event.

“Kalu is at home with Uzodinma, the reason he vigorously campaigned for his reelection in November, 2023. He is also at peace with all the South-Eastern Governors. PISE-P emphasizes peace. Peace among brothers and sisters. Peace for the development of South East. Peace for all”, the statement added.

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