By Peter Duru
MAKURDI—The Deputy Governor of Benue State, Chief Steven Lawani has said that he had no plans to defect to the opposition All Progressives Congress, APC , following his defeat at the just concluded governorship primaries of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Benue State, in the state.
Lawani’s denial is coming on the heels of unconfirmed reports that he had opened discussions with the Senate Minority Leader, Senator George Akume on his possible defection to the APC in the next few days.
However, Lawani noted that as a loyal PDP member, the loss he suffered at the primaries was not enough reason for him to renounce his membership of the party.
In a statement signed by his Press Secretary, Mr. Ejembi Oguche, Chief Lawani was quoted as saying,”I have been inundated with strident calls from well meaning individuals and teeming supporters about my rumoured possible defection to the opposition APC in the state.
“I want to state categorically and unambiguously that as a loyal party man, I have no intention of dumping the party since I have put the events and out come of the party primaries behind me, in the over all interest of the state and the party.”
Lawani reiterated his indebtedness to the delegates, his campaign team and other supporters for their loyalty, and especially for voting for him at the last primaries “in the face of extreme extraneous influences and other pernicious interests.”
He said he was the runner up at the governorship primaries, despite the glaring high wire intrigues that characterised the process noting that his acceptance and popularity among the PDP supporters was not in doubt.