By Ugochukwu Alaribe
The Abia State chapter of the All Progressives Congress, APC, has carpeted its Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, counterpart over a claim that no fewer than 3,000 members of the APC had defected to the PDP.
Abia State Chairman of the PDP, Chief Asiforo Okere, had during stakeholders’ meeting in Umuahia, said that the party embarked on tour of the 17 council areas where more than 3,000 members of the APC and All Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA, defected to the party across the state.
“We rebuilt the confidence of our members and strengthened their tiers of unity. The hallmark of that was our harvest of not less than 2,000 opposition members particularly of APC and APGA stock across the state. In addition, new members numbering over 3,000 came up at different LGAs across the state and declared openly for the party,” Okere said.
Also speaking at the stakeholders’ meeting, Governor Okezie Ikpeazu described Abia as a PDP state, stressing that the other parties have resorted to propaganda of defection as they have nothing to offer the people.
His words:“Our people know that they are better off with PDP and will never agree to return to the dark days represented by those now masquerading as APC leaders. We know their pedigree and footprints in this state and when it is time, I will challenge them to come forward and show the people of the state what they have done for them both in the past and present.”
However, Publicity Secretary of the Abia APC, Comrade Benedict Godson, described PDP’s claim that more than 3,000 APC members defected to it as tales by moonlight.
He said: “The way he mentioned more than 3,000 without mentioning their LGAs, wards, their positions in APC or APGA or at least, names of some of their prominent leaders who are leading them into PDP sounds more like folktale. We challenge Okere to give us names of prominent APC leaders that took their followers into PDP.
“When Dr. Alex Otti, a strong force in APGA moved into APC with his followers, it was clear. Also immediate past National Organizing Secretary of SDP, Hon. Emeka Atuma, moved into APC with his followers. When serving member of the House of Representatives for Ikwuano/Umuahia federal constituency, Hon. Sam Onuigbo, moved into APC, it wasn’t an amusing tale. Even the PDP felt the pain to the extent that they even protested against it.
“What about former commissioners in PDP Government, Chief Henry Ikoh and Obinna Oriaku? What about Hon. Ugochukwu Allen and other important Abia politicians. So, how can someone wake up, cook up a badly written kindergarten defection story and begin to sell it to the amusement of those who should know better?”
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