No fewer than 2,000 members of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and Social Democratic Party (SDP) in Oyo State have defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC) ahead of the 2023 general election.
According to reports, the governorship candidate of APC, Senator Teslim Folarin, and Oyo Central Senatorial candidate, Dr. Yunus Akintunde received the defectors at Elekuro High School, Ogbere, Ibadan in Ona-Ara Local Government area of the state.
While welcoming the new members, the Chairman, National Lottery Regulatory Commission, NLRC, Alhaji Fatai Ibikunle, assured them of fairness and equity in the party.
He said: “I welcome you to our great party, APC, as new members, and assure you of all rights accrued to the rest of our members.
“We will ensure that you benefit from every opportunity regarding the welfare of members without sentiments.” He assured.
Ibikunle, therefore, urged them to aggressively mobilise for electoral victories of all APC candidates in the 2023 elections.
In his speech, Folarin commended the defectors, saying they had made the right decision by joining APC.
He promised to carry them along in all party affairs and ensure that they benefit from all available opportunities.
The PDP defectors were led by Mogaji Victor Akinyemi Akinjide while SDP was led by Elder A Kalejaye. Other leaders were Pa Akintayo, Hon. Kolawole Waliyu, fondly called Ikoko, and Alhaji Amidu Olapade.
Mogaji Akinjide, who spoke on behalf of the defectors, said they were pleased with the way they were received by Folarin.
In his remarks, Elder Kalejaye said Folarin’s performance and his emergence as the governorship candidate of APC informed their defection, saying the victory of APC in 2023 would not only benefit the local government but the entire state.
In the company of Senator Folarin were Alhaji Fatai Ibikunle, Chairman, National Lottery Regulatory Commission; Alhaji Kehinde Olaosebikan, Hon. Hammed Bodunrin Digbi, Hon. Remi Sodiq, Hon. Waheed Ajibade, Hon. Mojeed Delesolu and among others.
This development came barely a day after a chieftain of the PDP in Delta State, Prince Gabriel Nwanazia, moved with over 200 defectors to the APC).
Nwanazia who defected to APC on Saturday at the Aniocha North Local Government Area of the state alongside his supporters said he moved to APC as a result of unresolved crises in PDP.
He said, “I am a strong PDP mobiliser, a great supporter but today I decided to move my over two hundred supporters to APC.
“PDP does not keep agreement, I have worked for PDP over the years, I have delivered for PDP in all elections in Aniocha North.
“Today, no development in our area, some of the things here were done by APC. Crisis everywhere in the party”
Presenting the defectors to the leadership of the party, the only serving APC councillor in Delta State, Mr. Emmanuel Oweazim, disclosed that Nwanazia was APC problem in the local government during elections in the past.
“2023 is the end of PDP in Delta state, one of our problems during election period had joined APC today and a lot of persons are expected to join APC soon.
“Crisis has made PDP lose one of its henchmen and by the time Omo-Agege emerged 2023, I will no longer be the only councillor in the state”