From Paul Osuyi, Asaba
The membership strength of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Delta State depleted on Wednesday when over 1,000 former members dumped the broom and embraced the umbrella of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
The defectors were led by the 2019 state House of Assembly candidate for Burutu constituency II, Peres Oloye, and the 2019 campaign coordinator and present publicity secretary of the party in Delta South Senatorial District, Agodi Agbor.
Declaring for the umbrella party at Tuomo town in Burutu Local Government Area of the state at a well-attended meeting of the PDP, Oloye surrendered his broom, the symbol of the APC to the leadership of the PDP, saying they were pioneer members of the PDP before they left in 2018 in search of electoral fortunes.
‘I left for the APC in the interest of the Ijaw nation and in search of greener pastures and adventure but I found out that the APC in Delta State is grossly anti-Ijaw. No Delta Ijaw person is considered good for any appointment,’ Oloye said.
‘All appointments made were given to other tribes and it seems there is no future for us who are ijaw people in the party in addition to endless in-fighting and intractable internal disunity in the state chapter of the party. So, I have decided to return to my original home, the PDP.’
Angodi Otutu Agbor, on his part, stated that the PDP ‘is my original party where I was their Public Pnnouncer/Master of Ceremony since its inception in 1998 till I left in 2018 for the APC for personal reasons.
‘This return, though a very difficult decision for me, is a home coming for me. The APC’s inability to provide the platform for inclusive participation for all in Delta State, especially as it affects the Delta Ijaw interest and sustained internal conflicts, needless factions/tendencies and lack of vision to provide democratic dividends at all levels for the betterment of Nigerians etc, are reasons for my decision to realign with the PDP once again.
‘The sickening ethnic bias against Delta Ijaw people is worrisome and a kill-joy, to say the least. Thus, in summary, I can say without hindsight that my involvement in the APC, in the first place, was a misadventure but the experience is worth it, though.’
Receiving the defectors on behalf of the state leadership of the party, the Chairman of the PDP in Burutu, Mr Ebike Oromoni, expressed joy at the return of the duo and their followers back to the party, disclosing that the party in the area had sleepless nights in the past ‘because of the activities of these two men in the opposition.
‘You are welcome back home and we are happy today that you are finally back. In fact, we had put the state chairman, Kingsley Esiso and the Delta South Senatorial District chairman, Julius Takeme on notice about your return to the party and they are both excited about it.
‘Both of you (Oloye and Agbor) were missed by the party but thank God you both have re-traced your steps back to the party and so be assured of equal treatment with other party members, as you will be accorded all privileges available in the party and you will not be treated as new comers. So, I receive you with open arms back to the PDP,’ he said.