Momentum continues to build for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) ahead of the November 6 governorship election in Anambra State as the party received over a thousand members of the two ruling parties, All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) and All Progressive Congress (APC), in Awka North LGA.
PDP leaders including former Governor Peter Obi, Valentine Ozigbo, the flagbearer of the PDP in the upcoming election, Senator Uche Ekwunife, welcomed the defectors at Central School Field, Mgbakwu, on Saturday, October 23, 2021, where the party held a rally in Awka North LGA.
While addressing the massive crowd that thronged the rally ground, the PDP flagbearer in the guber election, Mr Valentine Ozigbo, encouraged the people to vote for PDP, as the party will reverse the infrastructural decay in the local government area.
“We’re here to tell Awka North that the time to wipe their tears has come. We will begin an agricultural revolution that will transform the fortunes of riverine and agrarian areas like Awka North,” Ozigbo, a global finance expert, said.
“We’re coming to address problems of insecurity and infrastructural decay. Women and youths will be at the forefront of our administration. Within a few months of implementing our manifesto, you will be proud to be called Ndi Anambra.
“We’ve taken note of all abandoned projects in Awka North. We’ll tackle them squarely as soon as we come on board. Within six months in office, you’ll see the difference in what we’re bringing on board,” Ozigbo assured the cheering crowd.
In his remarks, the Vice-Presidential candidate of the PDP in the 2019 general election, Mr Peter Obi, also urged the people to vote for Ozigbo on November 6, describing the respected business leader as the best among all the candidates.
“My administration attracted a lot of projects to Awka North. Unfortunately, most of the projects we started were neither continued nor completed by the administration, which took over us,” Obi said.
“Ozigbo will continue and complete the abandoned projects and will do much more. He is prepared for the job,” Obi promised.
While receiving the defectors, the Chairman of the Directorate of Inter and Intra Party Affairs, Chief Ejike Oguebego, commended them for their bold step.
Chief Oguebego, who is the immediate past Chairman of the PDP in Anambra State, assured the new members that they would be integrated into the party’s structure, urging them to get more of their members into the PDP.
While giving reasons for their defection, APGA Youth Leader in Awka North, Comrade Innocent Anthony, who led the APGA delegation, said they had lost confidence in the ruling party after suffering many years of neglect.
“We decided to leave our personal interests to pursue the collective interests of Anambra people and enthrone good governance. For the past eight years, the present APGA administration in Anambra has not been fair to Awka North,” Comrade Anthony said.
“His Excellency Peter Obi initiated many projects in the local government area before handing over to Obiano, and till this day, none of the said projects was completed, talk less of initiating new ones.”
Ogbuefi Michael Nnakwue, who led hundreds of APC members to the PDP, said they took action because they are convinced that the PDP’s Valentine Ozigbo’s blueprint for Anambra’s development is timely, thorough, and impressive.
“We decided to join PDP after considering the manifesto of all the political parties and their candidates. We are convinced beyond reasonable doubt that PDP and its candidate, Valentine Ozigbo, have the best manifesto for the development of the state in general and Awka North in particular,” Ogbuefi Nnakwue said.
The defection is the latest in a string of similar actions, boosting PDP and Valentine Ozigbo’s chances at the forthcoming Anambra gubernatorial election. A few weeks ago, hundreds of APGA members decamped to PDP in a widely reported event at the Delta State Government House in Asaba.
Valentine Ozigbo is the founder of the Valentine Chineto Ozigbo (VCO) Foundation, a philanthropic endeavour that focuses on youth empowerment and capacity building that has given thousands of scholarships and business grants to youths.
Ozigbo has sponsored several programmes that directly impact the youths through his foundation, including Walk4Health, Walk4Peace, Freestyle Football competitions, Mbem and Oja competition, Anambra Talent UNLOCKED, among others.