By Ismaila Chafe
The suspended Deputy National Chairman of PDP, Sen. Babayo Gamawa and a member of the party’s Board of Trustees, Kaulaha Aliyu, have defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Two defecting top members of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) were received at the presidential villa by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the defection of the PDP bigwigs from Bauchi State came barely 24 hours after the president received various members of the Peoples Democratic Party’s Support Groups from the North East, who defected to the ruling APC.
NAN reports that the defectors who were accompanied by Governor Mohammed Abubakar of Bauchi state, met behind closed doors with President Buhari for about 35 minutes.
Speaking to State House correspondents after the meeting with the president, the governor expressed delight over the new political development, saying the defectors were in the presidential villa to pay political homage and pledge their support to the president.
Abubakar, who expressed delight over the decision of Gamawa and Kaulaha Aliyu to decamp to the APC, said: “You can see I’m very delighted because with these gentlemen I can go to sleep with my two eyes closed, so to speak.’’
On his part, Gamawa told the correspondents that his decision to defect to the ruling APC had nothing to do with his suspension from the PDP but his love for the country.
He, however, stated that the PDP would regret its action for suspending him from office.
“As a Nigerian, I want what is good for the country; I want good image for my country and I want to see development and progress of the country.
“And I have been saying it, as a politician, I play my politics not blindly. Whenever thing goes right or wrong I will say it the way it is. As Journalists, you are aware of what PDP did today – just because of an allegation they said they have suspended me.
“I want to call on them to check their secretariat. If they are in politics they should know what is happening on daily basis at the secretariat – what comes in and what goes out. They should check their mails and they will know the position of Sen. Babayo Gamawa before their action of today.
“I have no regret for defecting from the PDP and they (PDP) would regret their action, by God grace,’’ he said
He, therefore, described his suspension from the PDP as undemocratic and unconstitutional.
In his contribution, Kaulaha Aliyu, said he joined the APC to ensure electoral victory for President Buhari in the forthcoming general elections.
He said: “It’s a matter of principles – I believe among all the candidates no body can come near the integrity and honesty of President Buhari and with what he has done to the North East in particular, I feel I should support him and do the best I can for him to emerge victorious come Feb. 16, 2019.”
President Buhari had on Monday received delegation of the North East political stakeholders including the defectors led by Umar Bukar Bolori, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The defectors included the former governor of old Borno state, Alhaji Mohammed Goni and a onetime deputy governor of Adamawa, Alhaji saad Tahir.