Former President Goodluck Jonathan and some top members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in a last minute effort to salvage the party in the state have pleaded with members of the party planning to defect to the All Progressives Congress (APC) today [Aug. 15] to have a rethink.
The APC in a mega rally scheduled for the Samson Siasia Sports Complex and which would have in attendance Vice president Yemi Osinbajo, National chairman of the party, Chief John Odigie Oyegun,Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu, Rotimi Amaechi, Chief Timipre Sylva and governors elected on the platform is expected to receive founding members of the PDP in the state into its fold.
Saturday Sun investigations revealed that the list of the defectors which include PDP big wigs like, Chief Ndutimi Alaibe, former deputy governor Werinipre Seibarugu, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, Senator Clever Ikisikpo, Hon Nadu Karibo, Hon Warman Ogoriba, Hon Gini Angaye, former speaker Nestor Binabo, Senator John Brambiafa, Hon Stella Dorgu, former lawmakers, and former commissioners in the PDP government in the state had rattled Jonathan and the leadership of the party.
Jonathan who is said to be worried about the crisis rocking the party in the state which has forced some founding members to leave the party decided to personally intervene to stop the defection which is considered a huge loss to the party in the state. He was said to have placed calls to some of the defectors especially his political associates to see whether he could convince them not to go ahead with their planned defection but many of them told him that they have made up their minds to join the APC.
The PDP Unity group made up of political associates of Jonathan and his wife, Patience also pleaded with their members not to defect to the APC. The Coordinator of the group, Mrs. Maria Ebikake in a press conference begged them not to abandon the party which they all contributed to build. Ebikake who frowned at some PDP members hurling hate speeches at the defectors said they should desist from such act as it would not augur well for the party.
“We are not oblivious of the most recent defections from our great party in Bayelsa State to the opposition party, APC. We cannot also pretend to be unperturbed by the planned cross-carpeting of more of our esteemed members today. “There is no doubt that some of these defectors are men and women of high political substance and pedigree that have contributed immensely to our past achievements. The PDP Unity group appreciates that things had not been properly done in the immediate past within the PDP.
“We recognise these seeming imperfections as reason for the decision of some of our valued members to think of shifting camp to the APC. We therefore most sincerely appeal to those who have left to return home and those about to do so to remain because truly Bayelsa is the home of PDP”