A day after the parallel state congress of the All Progressives Congress in Bayelsa State, no fewer than 2,000 members of the party have defected to the Peoples Democratic Party in Sagbama area of the state.
The defectors, who cut across the wards in the area, claimed through their leaders that they returned to the PDP because the APC was faceless, confused, lacked focus and had no clear-cut agenda in the state.
The State Secretary of the PDP, Mr. Godspower Keku, received the defectors in company with other PDP leaders including Lt.-Col. Bernard Kenabai (retd.), a member of the Bayelsa State House of Assembly in Sagbama on Sunday.
The defectors thereafter took the heap of brooms, representing the symbols of the APC to a designated place where they were burnt alongside APC flags.
The Secretary of the PDP in the state, Mr. Godspower Keku, while receiving the defectors, said many of them were deceived to join the APC but had realized that the party is bereft of ideas and have decided to rejoin the PDP to contribute their quota to the development of Bayelsa State.
He, however, promised them that there would be level-playing field in the party and that they would not be discriminated upon.
Keku said, “These people left because Nigerians usually are doubting Thomases. When the APC won at the national level, a lot of the people thought it was over for the PDP in Bayelsa State. So, they left, but when they got there, they saw and what they saw was a collosal deceit. That is why our brothers and sisters, who were so deceived have come back en masse to the PDP.
“We have taken them, that is to show people, especially in Bayelsa that PDP is unbeatable in this state. PDP will rise and rise and the sky is our limit. It is an indication that before the 2019 elections, there will be no APC in Bayelsa.
“When they saw that the administration of Governor Seriake Dickson has done so much and where they went did not give them any hope, they had no choice but to run back to their base – where they were before.
“I call them returnees. They were formally in the PDP before they were deceived and left. Now, they have seen the light and they have come back.”
In his remarks, Bernard Kenabai, who preferred to call the defectors returnees, said that they were highly welcome back to the PDP.
He said that their coming was an indication that where they initially went did not augur well with them, insisting that Bayelsa is PDP and not the other way round.
The lawmaker said, “What you are seeing is what is supposed to happen in Bayelsa. For some reasons, some of them missed their ways and are now back. They are welcome back to the party.
“Right now, they have realised themselves and have come back home, the home they were part of building which is the right thing to do and with open arms, we have received them like what happened in the Bible to the Prodigal child. So we have received them to enlargen the party. PDP is strong, reliable and can be depended upon. It has big umbrellas to accomodate them.”
One of the defectors, representing those from Constituency 2, Toru Orua, Mr. Style Eneware, said they returned to the PDP because the APC in the state is faceless and irresponsible.