By Grace Danjuma
The Deputy of the sacked faction of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) under Ali Modu Sheriff, Cairo Ojougboh, and other members of the party have defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Delta State.
Ojougboh said they left the PDP because of the reign of impunity.
The defectors were received by the National Vice Chairman of the APC, Hilliard Eta; a leader of the party in the state, Olorogun O’tega Emerhor; Minister of State for Petroleum, Ibe Kachukwu; and the state chairman of the party, Jones Erue, among others in Agbor.
Ojougboh claimed that since the delivery of the Supreme Court judgment, which ousted the Sheriff faction, the Ahmed Markafi-led national leadership had refused to reach out to them, hence they decided to leave.
He said, “After the unfortunate court judgment, the next thing we heard was that they would grant us amnesty, as if we are criminals. When Raymond Dokpesi was nominated as a member of the committee for the non-elective convention, his nomination was rejected because they said they spent money on the court judgment.
“As if that was not enough, during the Anambra State governorship primary, Prof. Jerry Gana was made the chairman of a three-man committee to midwife a transparent election but governors Ayo Fayose of Ekiti State and Nyesom Wike of Rivers State rejected it and came up with another committee that went to Anambra and handed everything to Peter Obi.
“We now said it is time to look for people of like minds, people of progressive ideology to meet with because I know most of you have ambitions to pursue. If we do not make a decision to belong to the progressives, most of you will miss out.”
In his remarks, a former factional chairman of the PDP in the state, Mr. Austin Ogbaburhon, told the APC chieftains that the Sheriff faction is a beautiful bride, adding that the defectors rejected offers from other political parties before agreeing to join the APC.
While receiving the defectors, Eta said the coming of the new members would boost the chances of the party ahead of the 2019 general election.
He said, “For us in the national working committee of the APC, Delta is a low-hanging fruit for us to pluck but the coming of Ojougboh and his teeming supporters has made the fruit even lower for us. We welcome you to the party and urge you to go to your units and wards to register. Registration is free and I believe you will add value to the APC.”