*APC now boasts of 70, YPP 1
*As defectors accuse PDP of tyranny
By Peter Usman://
Gale of defections which started hitting the opposition People’s Democratic Party, PDP caucus in the Senate on Tuesday, has further reduced its number to 38 during the Wednesday plenary.
The development followed the resignation of three PDP senators from the party and joined the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, which now boasts of 70 lawmakers in the upper legislative chamber while the Young Progressives Party, YPP still retains its one member -Senator Ifeanyi Ubah (Anambra South).
The three lawmakers in separate letters to the Senate President, Dr. Ahmad Lawan, attributed their resignation from the opposition party to internal crisis, tyranny and leadership failure.
Lawan, while reading their letters of defection during the commencement of plenary, listed the defected lawmakers as Senators Sahabi Ya’u (Zamfara North); Lawali Hassan Anka (Zamfara West); and Peter Nwaoboshi (Delta North).
The defection letter by the Deputy Minority Whip, Senator Sahabi Ya’u (Zamfara West) reads: “I hereby inform Your Excellency and my Distinguished Colleagues of my decision to move from the Peoples’ Democratic Party to the All Progressives Congress Party.
“The decision is necessitated by the endemic crisis that engulfed the Zamfara State Chapter of the PDP, which led the national body to dissolve the State Exco of the party.
“This has negatively impacted effective representation of my constituents. Being a representative of my people, and having consulted widely with them, I decided to defect from the crises ridden party to a more formidable and peaceful party, the APC.”
Deputy chairman, Committee on Senate Services, Lawali Hassan Anka (Zamfara West), on his part, said his defection was informed by the crises in the Zamfara state chapter of the PDP.
Chairman of the Committee on Niger Delta, Peter Nwaoboshi (Delta North) said his decision to resign from the PDP was due to the implosion within the party.
The lawmaker accused the leadership of the party of fostering tyranny, arbitrariness and intolerance.
The Senate President, who stopped midway while reading the defection letters as a result of interjections from PDP senators, jokingly remarked that more defections were underway.
“Distinguished Senator (Chukwuka) Utazi, I know this is not easy, but you know we have to learn to live with it, because many more will be coming here”, Lawan said.
Nwaoboshi’s defection letter reads: “I write to respectfully notify Your Excellency and, indeed, the Senate that I’ve formally joined the All Progressives Congress, APC.
“This decision and action is due to division at all levels of the Peoples’ Democratic Party that sponsored my election into the Senate.
“The PDP in its entirety is imploding under huge yokes of factionalisation, arbitrariness, intolerance, tyranny and gross failure of leadership in ways that has made it impossible for my membership to continue in the party.
“This communication is made pursuant to Section 68 subsection (1g) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended, for your information, guidance and record purposes.
“While assuring Mr. President of my highest esteem, be further assured of my commitment to the Ninth Senate Legislative Agenda under your calm, steady leadership and absolute support for the APC-led federal government of His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR.”
Earlier on Tuesday, Senator Muhammad Hassan Gusau (Zamfara Central) had set the ball rolling by resigning from the PDP via a letter read by the Senate President.
He also hinged his resignation on alleged collapse of internal democracy and factionalisation of the party in Zamfara State.
Before the recent defections, PDP which had 44 senators in June 2019 during the inauguration of the 9th Senate had earlier lost Senator Elisha Cliff Abbo (Adamawa North) to the APC last year.