By Bashir Bello
KATSINA—A two term Speaker, Katsina State House of Assembly, Alhaji Umar Yau Gwajogwajo during the immediate past administration of Ibrahim Shehu Shema has said he decamped from the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP to the ruling All Progressive Congress, APC, in the state because he was satisfied with the leadership qualities of Governor Aminu Bello Masari.
Meanwhile, in a swift reaction, the state Chairman of the PDP, Alhaji Salisu Majigiri, said Gwajogwajo has not yet written officially notifying the party of his withdrawal of membership.
Gwajogwajo defected with his supporters and they were formally received by the APC at Maiadua, Katsina.
Speaking at the event, Gwajogwajo said he and no fewer than 4000 of his supporters resolved to decamp to the APC for three reasons.
His words: “First is to ensure that there is peace in our area. Second is we are satisfied with your (Masari) style of leadership. At your (Masari’s) age, there is nothing you want if not to end well on earth. That is why you are humble.
“We are satisfied that you are not a thief, and not a betrayer. You want people to benefit from you. And by God’s will, we will stand as a family, close friends and followers to ensure that you return in 2019 as governor.
“Third is to ensure that our local government is not left out in the developmental stride of the government. To ensure the area benefited from such developmental interventions.
“Let me also use the opportunity to appeal to the Governor for three things: Feeder roads in the area and x-ray machine in Daura General hospital. There is no x-ray machine in the hospital as the people have to go to Katsina for any related case.”
Gwajogwajo, on the platform of PDP, contested for the Katsina North Senatorial seat against the incumbent Senator Mustapha Bukar of APC.
It is speculated that he might contest for the same position in 2019.
While receiving the former Speaker, Governor Aminu Bello Masari said the party will provide a level playing ground for all, saying in the APC, there is no stranger or old timer.
Masari pleaded with the people to reach out to their neighbours in other political parties to join the ruling party based on the good intentions of the APC-led government.
Similarly, the APC state party chairman, Shittu S. Shittu said the defection of Gwajogwajo to the party was not the first time the party is welcoming defectors but it had never had such a big catch, adding that the party is open for all who are interested.
Earlier, the member representing Maiadua constituency in Katsina State House of Assembly, Ahmad Abubakar said with the defection of Gwajogwajo, the PDP is dead and buried in the area.
Gwajogwajo was chairman of Maiadua Local Government Area for eight years.
In a related development, the PDP State Chairman, Majigiri while receiving about 10,000 followers of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar under the platform of Atiku Care Foundation, ACF, led by the State Coordinator, Ghali Yusuf, who defected to the PDP in the state tongue-lashed Governor Masari on his comment that Atiku’s defection was a futility.
According to him the APC is crying wolf because it lost Atiku as it never said that Atiku was not relevant when he was with the ruling party.