Governor Dave Umahi has denied attacking Justice Inyang Ekwo whom he earlier described as a hatchet man doing the bidding of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

The judge, who presided over a suit filed by the opposition party at a federal high court in Abuja, sacked Mr Umahi and his deputy Eric Kelechi Igwe for dumping the platform they were elected on and decamping to the All Progressive Congress (APC).

He also declared vacant 15 seats of state lawmakers, including that of the speaker, for defecting with the governor to the APC.

Announcing that he has reported the judge to the National Judicial Council (NJC), Umahi further disparaged him, an action that irked the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) to demand an apology from the governor while describing his outburst as executive rascality.

Addressing his supporters on Wednesday in Abakaliki, the state capital, the governor who has filed appeal against the verdict of the lower court, denied attacking the judge whom he has already reported to the NJC.

He said the Mr Ekwo was misled by PDP lawyers whom he will also report to the NBA for disciplinary actions.

“I said the lawyers of the PDP are the ones doing forum shopping and I’m going to report the lawyers to NBA to discipline them because the judge was misled,” Umahi claimed. “And I’m using the opportunity to appeal for calm and to let Nigerians know that nobody castigated the judge and we will not.

“Today, we have appealed the judgement. We didn’t say we will disobey, otherwise we would have not appealed. We are before the appeal court in Enugu state and that of Abuja.

“We have also filed a stay of execution. So, we are still the governor and deputy governor of Ebonyi.”