No fewer than 700 members of the ruling All Progressives Congress and the African Democratic Congress across wards in the Irepodun Local Government Area of Kwara State on Saturday defected to the opposition Peoples Democratic Party.
The defectors who cut across all the wards in Irepodun LGA of the state claimed to belong to Lai Mohammed and Hon. Raheem Olawuyi groups in the ruling APC government in the state.
Welcoming the decampees at a ceremony in Omu-Aran, headquarter of the Council, a former member of the House of Representatives, Hon. Gbenga Makanjuola said that it is in the PDP that their expectations would be met and their welfare taken care of.
Makanjuola, who was a former deputy Chief of Staff to the former Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki, expressed sincere gratitude to the decampees for finding PDP worthy.
He described the decampees as “political grassrooters” who had come to the PDP after several private meetings with them.
He also said that they had joined the PDP due to lack of trust and integrity in the leadership of their former parties, “coupled with continuous internal crisis rocking their former parties while the interest of the party members is not considered.
Also speaking, one of the group leaders of the decamping groups, Queen Ogbufo, said, “Our former parties are a sham. They lied to us to have our support back then and now they don’t care about our interests anymore. PDP recognised us and called us to a meeting through the ‘E fura Elders Consultation Forum’. We have decamped to PDP today to show them our strength and to help bring back good governance to our people. Many of us here and some others who are not here today are ready to work in unity and get PDP back into power,” she said.
She also said that the group has one of the strongest APC grassroots mobilising groups of Alhaji Lai Mohammed in Omu Aran and many others from ADC in Irepodun Local Government.
While addressing the decamping members who came in their various group across Irepodun LGA, the Chairman of PDP in the Irepodun Local Government, Hon. Saheed Oyelowo, said, “Some people lied so much to blackmail our party in the last election and turned the masses against us, but now masses have realised that we are the ones who truly have the best to offer them.
“These sets of decampees and many others that are still coming have been able to differentiate between us and the other party who doesn’t have things to offer. We are happy to have them and we are promising to return power to them when we come back in 2023 in Kwara State.”
However, in a reaction, the Chairman of the Caretaker Committee of APC in the state, Hon. Abdullahi Samari said that the people who claimed to decamp from the party were not members of the party.
Samari said, “The story of decamping of some of our members to the PDP is news to me, maybe some of those people belong to other political parties and not the APC because all our members are busy at the local government congress of APC held in all the 16 local government councils in the state on Saturday. Those claiming to be members of APC among those that claimed to have decamped are mischievous. They are not genuine members of APC in Kwara state.”