Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
Business mogul, Chief Mike Okibe Onoja, has led thousands of his supporters in the Benue South Senatorial District, popularly known as Zone C, to decamp from the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) to the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
Onoja, who also used the opportunity to announce his intention to contest for the senatorial seat of the zone, stated that he was only on sabbatical to the APC and that he is now back from sabbatical.
He recalled that as an aspirant for the Zone C Senatorial seat in 2015, he stepped down for then Senate President, David Mark, in the hope that the PDP would win that election and he (Mark) would be returned back as Senate President.
His words, “In 2014/2015, I was an aspirant in this very party against the senate president. The accreditation was done and we were to start voting when I stepped down for David Mark in the interest of the Idoma nation.
“If the PDP had won that time, David Mark would have been returned as Senate President. I did that without any precondition and he (Mark) was grateful I did that.
“After that, I took sabbatical leave from the party. Now, my sabbatical leave has ended.
“So, it is my honor to be back home. I have gone and have seen that the grass that is so called greener is not as green as we thought.
“I went to APC and discovered APC is a one man party. It is a party of one man by one man and for one man.
“So, I decided that this is the end of my sabbatical. In APC, unless you know somebody, you cannot be anything and that is not good for democracy.
“At a certain point in your life, you will refuse to take certain things.
“That is why they (APC) keeps losing elections in Zone C. Therefore, I am here to tell you I am back home with my team very numerous to mention.
“So, I can tell you that as far as we are concerned, APC is dead in Zone C,” Onoja stated.
Responding, State Chairman of the PDP, Hon. John Ngbede while welcoming Onoja and his supporters to the PDP noted that all party members are all one and nobody can stop anyone from joining the party and standing for any election.
“You cannot stop anybody from joining the party. Anyone who wishes to join us can do that and has every right to contest for any election.
“A ward chairman cannot deny anybody from joining the party. Anyone who tries to stop others from joining us would be sanctioned.”