- The PDP lost another member as Rashidi Ladoja waved a final bye to the party
- Ladoja announced his defection to the African Democratic Congress in a ceremony at his residence in Ibadan
- He said he now has the responsibility of welcoming the new governors and defectors that are joining the ADC
A former governor of Oyo state, Chief Rashidi Ladoja, has formally announced his defection from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to African Democratic Congress (ADC).
In a ceremony witnessed by his associates and loyalists at his residence in Ibadan on Friday, August 3, the former governor said the national leadership of PDP has been unfair to him despite his genuine intention to return to the party he jointly built and on whose ticket he governed the state between 2003-2007.
According to him, the efforts and sacrifices he made to stabilise the PDP in the state and in the country went unrecognized as the party leadership sidelined him in drawing up lists of candidates for ward, local government and state congresses, The Nation reports.
He said he has now accepted the responsibility of facilitating the defection of serving and former governors and lawmakers across the country into the ADC.
The former governor added that the ADC would still work with the PDP at the national level, having signed an agreement to field a joint presidential candidate.
Ladoja said: “The assignment that the delegation of ADC from Abuja gave me is that the governors that are planning to join ADC, that I should facilitate their defection to ADC. I may not always be around, but it is for the betterment of our party. This is because I am sure that the home front in the state is safe. Those at home are competent.
“The ADC and PDP have signed an agreement to present a joint presidential candidate. What we are seriously working on for now is that the presidential candidate should emerge from ADC. This will compel me to move to different parts of the country quickly so that ADC will hold the ace in other states, after we have conducted the congresses in Oyo state.
“As it is now, there is no ward in Oyo state that we don’t have presence. If possible, we should conduct our ward congress next Saturday. Registration will begin from now. If the ward congress is conducted on Saturday, the Saturday that will follow, we can also conduct local government congress, and the Saturday that will follow that one on August 18, we can conduct state congress.
“We need to conduct the congresses on time so that we would not contravene the guidelines set by INEC. It is not that we are in a haste, but time is no longer on our side with barely eight months to the general elections.
“By the grace of God, things will fall in proper places. I urge you all to cooperate with the leadership as we go through the process. Let us be more committed than we did in the past.”
Ladoja’s move came barely a year after he rejoined the PDP from the Accord Party following extensive talks between him and PDP leaders. He had dumped the Accord Party after the 2015 general elections to rejoin the PDP, which he had left before the 2011 general elections.
Legit.ng had reported that Ladoja had perfected plans to quit the PDP for the ADC. A chieftain of the PDP and former minister was quoted to have said that Ladoja’s decision to defect to ADC was not unconnected with alleged plans to impose Engineer Seyi Makinde as the Oyo state PDP governorship candidate in the 2019 general elections.
The former governor is also said to be worried about what was described as the lack of internal democracy in the management of the affairs of the party by the Oyo state chapter.
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