BY ADEYEMI ADELEYE
LAGOS- Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta and the PDP Vice Presidential Candidate on Sunday received hundreds of defectors from the African Democratic Congress (ADC) to PDP in Lagos State.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that some Lagos ADC Ward and Local Government Executive members on Sunday officially announced collapse of their structures in the state, ahead of the general elections.
Making the declaration at Ikeja, Deputy Primate Adewole Ijaogbomo, the Chairman of ADC Committee of LGA Chairmen in Lagos state, said that the executives had seen the need to collapse their structures to rescue the state from the present ruling APC.
“We must free Lagos State from bondage. There is the need to make Lagos State work again.
“No amount of criticism can solve the problem rather than for all the concerned people to come together to defeat the ruling party.
“Before today, we sat down as a group and profiled political parties in Lagos state and their candidates for gubernatorial election.
“For the purpose of identifying the best of all who can match the ruling party in terms of structure, spread, tenacity and all other ancillary qualities required for winning election.
“All we are here today is to do what is right and just. Not for our personal interests, but the interests of the commoners in Lagos State in particular and Nigeria at large. We must not get it wrong this time around.
“Based on the aforementioned submissions, we, the LGA chairmen of African Democratic Congress in Lagos State including the ward chapters, hereby collapse our structures.
“And through this medium direct our entire structures to mobilise, campaign and vote all PDP candidates from Atiku/Okowa ticket for the presidential election on the Feb. 25, 2023 and Dr Abdul-azeez Olajide Adediran (Jandor) for governor of Lagos state on the March 11, 2023.”
Receiving the defectors, Okowa, who commended the defectors for having the courage to decide to work with PDP and the Atiku/Okowa Presidential ticket in Lagos state, said that such positive movement could change things in the state.
“For those of us who are politicians, when we see strength in politics, we recognise it. When we see the positive movement that can truly change things, we recognise it.
“From what I have seen today, the baton of leadership is going to change hand in Lagos.
“Looking into the crowd, I can see a very high population of youths and I know there is strength in that. I can see a lot of women here, and I can see the strength.
“I know you are very eager to take over Lagos State, and for Jandor to become governor of this state, but the easiest pathway is to ensure that Atiku/Okowa ticket wins the election next Saturday.
“Once that election is won, there will be a ripple effect here and the so-called ownership in Lagos would have crumbled and you can now freely take over the government house in Lagos,” Okowa said.
Stressing the need for lots of work to be done before Saturday’s presidential election, Okowa urged the youth and women to move out en mass in door-to-door, market to market and community to community campaigns to talk to voters and mobilise votes.
Okowa, who assured Nigerians of relief from their pains and suffering, said that Abubakar and he understood the problems of disunity, lack of trust, insecurity, badly-managed economy, unemployment and others facing the country.
According to him, the PDP will reverse the trend of poverty and hardship.
“With Atiku/Okowa administration, we are ready to work will all Nigerians to discover the Nigeria of our dreams.
“This country is blessed enough, if we are able to set the foundation right and to work genuinely with our people, we can still enjoy our country yet again and grow our economy to very high level.
“Be strong willed, we will definitely take over Lagos and Atiku/Okowa will take over Nigeria and we shall work together to give the best to our people,” he said.
According to him, Atiku/Okowa ticket is desirous to manage Nigeria so that it will work for all with every citizen living in unity.
“Truly, to realised Nigeria of our dreams, to grow the economy and fight the insecurity, we must learn to stay united and to have the will to do the right thing.
“We stand for unity. Enough of the deceit. We are experienced enough and we are humble enough to work with every Nigerian. Atiku is humble and has never been a fanatics and does not discriminate.
“The pains are with us now, the help is on the way. Go out there and take the campaign to every part of Lagos. Make sure your vote counts and defend it..Fear not,” he added.
In his remarks, Dr Abdul-Azeez Adediran, the Lagos PDP Governorship Candidate, who noted that the defectors were coming to work for the party from top to bottom to give victory for the party on Feb. 25 and March 11 elections.
“We will conquer all of them and come up with formidable team to defeat the hegemony of Godfatherism in Lagos,” Adediran said.
Adediran said that he had continued to assure the people that Atiku would address both the economy and security challenges facing the nation.
Also speaking, Pastor Aivoji Philip, the Lagos State PDP Chairman, said that the party was not only ready to win election but ready to serve the masses.
NAN reports that the defectors included ADC chairmen from various wards and local government areas of Lagos and their executive members.
Gov. Godwin Obaseki and other PDP leaders in the state were also in attendance to receive the defectors. (NAN)