Former governor of the old Anambra State, Jim Nwobodo, who admitted receiving N100million from former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki, on Friday dumped the Peoples Democratic Party for the ruling All Progressive Congress.
He defected to the APC in Enugu alongside a former senator, Fidelis Okoro, representing Enugu North, and another chieftain of PDP, Richard Ozobu. They were received into the APC at the party’s meeting convened by Foreign Affairs Minister, Jeffrey Onyeama.
Punch reports that there were indications that the former PDP bigwigs’ defection did not go down well with the some APC members, who openly voiced their dissatisfaction with the development at
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The party faithfuls could not hide their surprise, and shock, when Nwobodo arrived at the venue of the meeting in company with Okoro. Some APC members, who apparently understood the duo’s mission at the meeting, voiced their disapproval.
Chairman of the party in Enugu State, Dr. Ben Nwoye, who appeared to have prior knowledge of the defection, got the aggrieved party members to calm down before Nwobodo made his declaration speech.
In his declaration speech, Nwobodo had harsh words for his old party, PDP.
Nwobodo condemned the PDP, and blamed the party’s leadership for allowing five governors to leave for the APC in the build up to the 2015 general elections.
According to him, he is joining the APC to move the people of Enugu State into the mainstream at the federal level.
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Drawing from his experience as a governor, he said it was not good being in the opposition.
He said members of the APC in Enugu State should not to be discouraged by the electoral losses they suffered in the state in the past.
“You must always lose, what matters is the ability to rise again.He pointed out that the slogan “change” did not start now with the APC.
“I must condemn our former party, PDP – I know we had problems.
“I told our former chairman, how come did we allow five governors to leave the party?
“I am not looking for a job, I am talking because I want peace.
“I want our people to be part of the Federal Government at the centre.
“I had a problem being an opposition governor.
“I am not coming into APC because I want anything.
“I want our people to be reintegrated and have our own share of the Federal Government resources,” Nwobodo said. Nwobodo recalled that while he was in PDP, his wife had always been an active member of the APC.
According to him, it started in 1983, when he was an opposition governor.
Mr. Nwobodo, also a former PDP senator representing Enugu East between 1999 and 2007, and a former sports minister, is currently under investigation by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission for receiving N100 million from Mr. Dasuki, who allegedly diverted $2.1billion meant for arms purchase, to politicians.
The former governor has since denied that the money was for his personal use, claiming that it was meant for the PDP leaders in the South East zone to mobilize support for the re-election of former President Goodluck Jonathan in the 2015 election.