Some leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Akure South Local Government Area of Ondo State with their supporters have defected to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
The defectors, led by Mr Smart Oloye, a former Deputy Chairman of PDP in Akure South Local Government, were received by the State Chairman of APC, Chief Ade Adetimehin, in his office in Akure.
A statement by Mr Steve Otaloro, APC Media Director in the state, on Friday said the defectors were mainly supporters of the former lawmaker representing Akure South/Akure North Federal Constituency, late Adedayo Omolafe, popularly known as Expensive.
The News Agency of Nigeria(NAN) recalled that Omolafe, who was elected in 2019 on the platform of PDP, died on Aug. 16, 2021.
“The reason we are here today is to formally declare for APC after making consultations across the entire political landscape of Akure Local Government.
“We want the political structure left behind by our late mentor, Adedayo Omolafe to be fully integrated into APC and given a sense of belonging like every member and the state chairman of the party, Chief Ade Adetimehin, has assured us of his support.
“We believe it’s the best thing to do moving forward after waiting for this long.
“And we acknowledge the political sagacity, understanding, and love shown to the group by Mr Adetimehin after the death of our political mentor, Adedayo Omolafe, popularly called Expensive.
“The APC chairman has been very supportive of the family of our late leader,” Oloye was quoted as saying during the defection.
Mr Taye Jombo, another defector, described the state APC chairman as a great leader whose winning streak had strategically weakened the opposition parties in the state.
“This is the first time in the history of Ondo state that we have two strong political parties -APC and PDP.
“It is worthy of note that APC state chairman’s knowledge in politics, management capability, and dynamism continue to weaken the other parties in the state without given anyone incentives before they voluntarily come to APC.
“This attribute of Adetimehin is one good reason we have decided to join APC,” Jombo said.
Receiving the defectors, Adetimehin assured them of equal opportunities in the party.
He reeled out the names of the defectors with their supporters to include Oloye; Jombo; Mr Seun Adanri; Woman leader of PDP in Akure South, Mrs Ranti Fakinlede; legislative aide to the late Omolafe, and Mr Muyiwa Agunloye, the current PDP Treasurer in Akure South Local Government.
Adetimehin also named Mr Muyiwa Adu, former PDP candidate for Akure South/Akure North Federal Constituency; and Mr Yekini Olanipekun as some of the PDP chieftains in Akure South Local Government who had indicated interest in joining the APC.
The chairman promised to formally receive them to the party in an elaborate rally when the leader of the party in the state, Gov. Rotimi Akeredolu resume from his annual leave. (NAN)