Akinlade, supporters return to APC
We’re unaware of any defection, says ruling party
After exhausting his lifelines up to the Supreme Court, the gubernatorial candidate of Allied People’s Movement (APM) in Ogun State, Abdulkadir Akinlade, yesterday announced his return to the All Progressives Congress (APC). He pulled other stalwarts of APM back to their former party.
They had defected from APC, after the primaries in October last year, to contest the last general elections. In a surprise move yesterday, thousands of APM supporters at their secretariat, Abeokuta, a few metres from the APC secretariat, converged to announce their comeback to the APC.
But the leadership of the APC said they were not aware that Akinlade and co had returned to the party.Akinlade, accompanied by his deputy governorship candidate, Mrs. Adepeju Adebajo, addressed the mammoth crowd of party supporters, disclosing that at a stakeholders’ meeting on Sunday, they had agreed to return to the fold
His words, “As loyal party members, we accept and wish to use this opportunity to thank them for allowing us to explore our aspirations, even when it came at great political and personal cost to them.
The Supreme Court last Thursday validated Governor Dapo Abiodun’s victory at the last governorship polls, but Akinlade said the judgement “fell short of our expectation”.Akinlade thanked President Muhammadu Buhari “who, despite all efforts from certain quarters to blackmail us before him, stood by his conviction on the course of justice and fairness.
“As democrats and believers in the rule of law, we must now set our grievances aside, display the same courage and high sense of responsibility that kept us on course through the last 15 months. We must, at this juncture, show that our efforts so far were truly driven by unwavering desire to sustain the unprecedented developmental strides recorded between 2011 and 2019 across our dear state.”He assured his supporters that they had lost nothing. “Rather, through our collective actions and support from God, we have set in motion a chain of actions that hinge on our resolve to sustain this noble vision tagged the ‘Mission to Rebuild our Dear State – Ogun’.”
But the Publicity Secretary of APC caretaker committee, Tunde Oladunjoye, said the party was not formally notified of any defection.Oladunjoye added, “When we get a formal report of the defection, we will study it and react appropriately.“People can just assemble anywhere and say they have defected to the party; but it is left for us as a responsible party to study the situation and react accordingly.”