It is no longer news that some members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) House of Representatives members in Imo state have negotiated themselves into the All Progressives Congress perhaps, for their stomach infrastructure.
Following this development, PDP members and the public may be wondering why those elected under the party’s platform are leaving in droves. The truth of the matter is that all of them are not leaving PDP because they have any personal issues with the party’s Governorship candidate, Senator Samuel Anyanwu, but they left after they were frustrated by one of the leaders of PDP in the state, Chief Emeka Ihedioha.
A discussion with an Aide to one of the defected Federal Lawmaker revealed that, the House of Representatives members who spent so heavily on Chief Ihedioha’s Governorship ambition or project in 2014 to 2015 and 2019 to 2023 respectively yet, were treated with disdain.
While some were denied a return ticket to House of Representatives after they spent through their nose, some who miraculously or tactically scaled through were frustrated during the 2023 election by Chief Ihedioha until they failed the exercise. Remember that all the defectors are outgoing House of Representatives members.
Today, the party’s Governorship candidate, Senator Samuel Anyanwu is reaching out and consulting widely to keep PDP more viable and formidable in the state. His efforts to reconcile aggrieved persons, groups and leaders are trickily struggled by some mischief makers to frustrate it. Alas, it is only God that gives power!
However, following the election of the APC Presidential candidate, Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu and the speculation of appointment of the incumbent Speaker of House of Representatives, Rt Hon Femi Gbajabiamila as Chief of Staff, these defectors believe that their colleague as Chief of Staff will appoint them into various offices as compensation for dumping PDP.
Reasons for their sudden defections are as follows:
1. Bede Ekeh: a two time member of House of Representatives for Aboh Mbaise/Ngor Okpala constituency who is currently serving out his term was denied PDP return ticket and frustrated by his constituent, Chief Emeka Ihedioha.
As a man on a mission to revenge and recover the hundreds of millions he allegedly spent on Ihedioha’s Governorship bid, he needed a credible platform to fight back at Ihedioha until he found one and perched on the back of Divine Mandate Movement (DMM) until he got information that his colleague, Femi Gbajabiamila is now a Chief of Staff, he concluded that by leaving PDP for APC is the only short route to make some cool cash. This is why he defected.
2. Ikenna Elezianya: a onetime member of House of Representatives for Owerri federal constituency. He narrowly secured PDP return ticket after Emeka Ihedioha did everything to frustrate and deny him the ticket with his ally, Kelechi Nzewuihe.
To demonstrate his dislike against Ikenna Elezianya even after the primary election; Emeka Ihedioha was said to have directed his Rebuild Imo supporters to vote only for the party’s Imo East Senatorial candidate, Uche Onyeaguocha and dump Elezianya.
At some time when Atiku Abubakar, the PDP Presidential candidate allegedly sent 1.4 billion election intervention funds to Imo PCC where House of Representatives candidates were to collect over 60 million each, Ihedioha did everything to deny Elezianya this funds in his capacity as the Imo PCC Chairman. This is to see that Elezianya failed the election.
Elezianya became frustrated that even one of his party leaders, Ihedioha worked against his re-election coupled with the news that his colleague, Femi Gbajabiamila is now the Chief of Staff to the incoming President, he concluded that by joining APC, it will be the easiest route to make cool cash and recover himself from bankruptcy.
3. Jerry Alagbaoso: a third time member of House of Representatives for Orlu, Orsu and Oru East federal constituency. Alagbaoso is a long time ally of Hope Uzodinma, in fact, Uzodinma allowed Alagbaoso to be re-elected when Court nullified Alagbaoso’s election in 2020 as a sitting Governor.
If Uzodinma did not consider his long time relationship with Alagbaoso, he would have replaced him with his then party candidate at least, to test his powers as a fresh Governor then.
On the other hand, there is no PDP member in the state that does not know how Ihedioha fought Alagbaoso right from the floor of the House of Representatives. In perfecting his plans, as Deputy Speaker, Ihedioha in connivance with his friend and Speaker, Aminu Tambuwal denied Alagbaoso all reasonable House committee despite the fact that he is a ranking member.
Out of frustration, Alagbaoso dragged both PDP and Ihedioha to court against what he tagged, injustice against party leaders. This court matter lingered until the current PDP Governorship candidate as we gathered, prevailed on Alagbaoso to withdraw the suit against the party and settle out of court. This is part of his efforts to stabilize PDP!
Another obvious fact is that Alagbaoso is too close to Tinubu’s Chief of Staff, Femi Gbajabiamila, and very sure that by joining APC, it will be a great opportunity to make cool cash to recover the ones he spent during his failed Imo West Senatorial ticket.
4. Henry Nwawuba: a two term member of House of Representatives for Mbaitoli/Ikeduru constituency. Apart from being a two term member, Nwawuba is yet to understand the Nigeria and Imo political terrain. He only follow others to move to anywhere immediately he is assured that cool cash will come out.
His effort to secure return ticket for a third term under PDP failed. Out of frustration, Nwawuba joined APGA, a political party that has seized operation in the state. After the 2023 election, Nwawuba took the fifth position after loosing to the APC Candidate, Engr Akarachi Amadi.
As a novice in Nigerian politics, seeing that his colleagues and political contractors are moving into APC on hearing that their colleague, Femi Gbajabiamila is now the Chief of Staff, he concluded that the opportunity may offer him cool cash or appointment to enable him replace the ones he spent during the 2023 election.
Investigations carried out showed that non of these former PDP members dumped the party because of any personal issue with the party’s Governorship candidate, Senator Samuel Anyanwu, but because of the obvious frustrations, humiliations, and the huge money they purportedly spent in wrong hands is the reason they are joining APC, perhaps to leverage on their colleague, Femi Gbajabiamila to remain relevant and possibly secure federal appointment.