. Say defection in interest of the state
All the 21 Local Government Chairmen of the Labour Party in Kogi State have defected to the ruling All Progressives Congress.
They chairmen said they collapsed their structure in order to support the APC governorship candidate, Usman Ododo, in the November 11, 2023 election.
At the official decamping ceremony on Thursday in Lokoja, the defectors said LP was no longer viable in the state.
They further anchored their reason for abandoning their party for APC on the conviction that the APC candidate, Usman Ododo, had shown that “he is a unifier whose nationalist qualities are needed to consolidate on the achievements of Governor Yahaya Bello.”
Leading the chairmen, scores of their supporters and other members of Labour Party in the state to APC at the defection ceremony, Kogi Coordinator of the Obidient Movement, Awe Kayode, said the Labour Party structure in the state was a formidable one that delivered massive votes to the party’s presidential candidate, Peter Obi without inducement or support.
He stresses that their decision to collapse the LP structure into the APC was to join forces with the Progressives to actualise the ‘Kogi Agenda’ which seeks to further unite the people and ensure even development across board.
Kayode said, “I was in APC before I left to join the Labour Party. I am back today with more people and we are ready to add value. LP got over 76,000 votes in the last presidential election, we still have the same people that worked to achieve that feat.
“Kogi State belongs to all of us and we have decided to jettison ethnic or religious agenda to support the candidate of APC who promotes the Kogi Agenda.”
In his submission, the LP Chairman of Bassa Local Government Area, who doubles as Chairman of LP Chairmen Forum, Jimba Emmanuel, noted that political party was just a platform to power and that good governance was not about the party “but individuals who are passionate about development and attracting dividends of democracy to the people.”
He maintained that the governorship candidate of the Labour Party lacked the required quality, hence their decision to abandon what he described as a “sinking ship”.
The Forum chairman promised that his colleagues had agreed to mobilise all their structures across the 21 local government areas to deliver massive votes for the APC candidate.
In his remarks, the Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Wemi Jones, commended the leader of the Obidient Movement in Kogi State, Awe Kayode, for his doggedness and mobilization ability.
He said the crowd seen at the decamping event was a testimony of the genuineness of their decision to join the Progressives.
Jones urged the defectors to join forces in canvassing and mobilizing for the victory of the APC governorship candidate to ensure sustainability and consolidation of the gains made by the Yahaya Bello administration.
Receiving the new members, the Kogi State APC Chairman, Abdullahi Bello, said “APC is a party that believes in development, equality and has a good reward system”, adding that the new members would enjoy all the privileges as other members of the party.
He said members of the Obedient family were passionate and reasonable as they could distinguish between right and wrong, adding that their decision to join the APC showes that they appreciated the developmental efforts of Governor Yahaya Bello and his unwavering commitment to the unity, security and wellbeing of the people of Kogi State.
According to him, aside from the character and leadership qualities of Usman Ododo, being a critical member of the New Direction Administration had further equipped him with the needed knowledge and experience to lead the state and consolidate on the achievements of Governor Bello.
Bello urged members of the APC to disregard noise makers in opposition parties and go all out to ensure massive victory for the APC candidate, adding that as far as the November election was concerned, the APC has no rival.