By Olasunkanmi Akoni
Elected state Governors on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and other chieftains, led by its National chairman, Iyorchia Ayu, former Senate President, Bukola Saraki, former PDP Deputy National Chairman, Olabode George and on Friday, converged on Lagos, with a vow to intensify strategy and efforts toward taking over the state leadership in 2023 general elections.
Governors Seyi Makinde (Oyo State); Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, (Abia State); Udom Emmanuel (Akwa Ibom), Dr. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Enugu) and Ezenwo Wike (Cross Rivers) were among others in Lagos to witness and welcome Lagos4Lagos, a prominent dissident group in the All Progressives Congress, APC, in the state, to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) formally, held at Tafawa Balewa Square (TBS).
Other notable figures at the official declaration of the group from APC to PDP at the event were: Vice Presidential Candidate of PDP in 2019 general election, Peter Obi, former Governor of Ondo State, Dr Olusegun Mimiko, others were: Ambassador, Taofeek Arapaja, the PDP Deputy National Chairman (South), Publisher Ovation, Dele Momodu, Alhaji Rahman Owokoniran, the General Secretary of PDP, South-West, including members of the National Assembly, state and other National Executives of the party.
The Lagos4Lagos group, led by Dr. Olajide Adediran, popularly called “Jandor,” along with his teeming loyal supporters were formally, and well received by PDP stalwarts on the occasion.
Ayu in his address urged Nigerians not to be deceived a third time in 2023 by those who deceived them with the mantra called “change” and subjected them to hardship.
According to him, “Are you enjoying the change? How much is a bag of rice? They deceived Nigerians. We declare no more slavery in Lagos. By this time next year, we will celebrate a PDP Governor in Lagos State.”
Also speaking, Ikpeazu, described Adeniran as strategic and a bridge builder, who would add value to the party in the state.
Ikpeazu noted that the forum’s Chairman and Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State could not make the event because he was bereaved.
“On behalf of my brother governors, we officially join the Lagos PDP family, to welcome a new strategic members of our party.
“You are very important and strategic. PDP is the only democratic party in Nigeria,” he said.
Ikpeazu urged members of the PDP family in the state to give Adediran maximum support and cooperation for the defector to contribute his quota to the growth of the party.
“Jandor is the bridge between the young and the old in Lagos politics and he should be given full support by all so that there can be unity,” Ikpeazu stated.
Wike said: “Jandor has made PDP Lagos family to be one. The more, the merrier. As he has joined us, you will see what will happen in Lagos.”
Chairman Lagos State Caretaker Committee, PDP, Engr. Julius Akinsola handed over the PDP card and other paraphernalia of the party to the Lead Visioner, Adediran.
Akinsola, said that PDP belong to the masses, especially the new defectors and million within and outside the nation.
“It is the party of equal opportunity and it welcomes all Nigerians,” Akinsola said while welcoming Adediran and all his followers,” he said.
He urged the new defectors to mixed with existing members across the ward, local, state and national levels.
Akinsola, who noted that PDP works on rules and regulations, urged the new members to read the constitution from beginning to end.
He, however, handed over Adediran to Mr Aremu Hassan, Chairman of PDP in Ojo Local Government Area, where the leader came from and unveiled him to the members of the party in the state.
Jandor, in his address, said his group has moved to where numerical strength would be put to test.
According to him, if Governor Makinde of Oyo State could win election without being a former lawmaker nor having support of the government at the centre, he would win governorship election in 2023.
“We have declared for the PDP, we are going to win for the party. We are here (PDP) to add value, we are here to be part of the big family and together we will take over Lagos,” Jandor boasted.
Recall that, Adediran had stated at a gathering organized for the group at Amuwo Odofin Local Government, last weekend during a tour of the area that he was prepared and ready to convert the Lagos PDP delegate structure to a governorship structure. The Amuwo Odofin born politician stressed how important the local government is to him.
According to him, “January 21, (Friday) 2022, will be the final burial of APC in Lagos State.
“On that day, January 21, will be the official declaration of our group to PDP and it will be broadcasted on national television. The event will be held at the Tafawa Balewa Square, TBS with 10 governors present at the event.
“On January 21, it is the day that we have set aside for the final burial ceremony of APC in Lagos state.
“That day, the political party called APC will cease to exist in the state of Lagos. We are trying to rewrite the history of our dear state and it’s going to happen in 2023.”