THE Enugu State Governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi has been cautioned not to join the bandwagon of defectors and dump the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) for the All Progressive Congress (APC)
A one-time Commissioner for Local Government in the state, Chief Sam Ejiofor who gave the advice Sunday, said that were Ugwuanyi to defect, his interest in a second term as governor would suffer or perish.
Ejiofor, an influential aide in the administration of former state governor, Dr. Chimaroke Nnamani (1999-2007), told journalists at his country home, Agbani in Enugu that it would be the greatest political blunder should Ugwuanyi defect to APC.
The former commissioner likened the APC to Nigeria, saying that despite having been together for more than 100 years as a country, Nigeria remains a fractious entity where “the centre cannot hold.”
According to him, “APC is not yet a political party, it is yet to hold a national convention since coming to power and the party may not survive 2019 general elections.”
Ejiofor noted that although he doubts the rumour in some quarters about the possible defection of Ugwuanyi to APC, he felt it was necessary to caution him and other politicians who might be contemplating leaving the PDP.
He said that those defecting to APC in the state and other parts of the country were doing so for either pecuniary interests or to evade anti-graft agencies.
“PDP will still rule Enugu a 100 times, either as PDP or another strong party. If Ugwuanyi leaves PDP for APC it will mark his political doom,” he claimed.
On the recent defection of former governor of Enugu, Sullivan Chime, Jim Nwobodo and Senator Ken Nnamani to APC, Ejiofor said, “even when Sullivan was governor, he was in PDP physically but his soul was in APC. He succumbed to peer pressure; where your peers are is where you are likely to go. Sullivan is close friend to the former governor of Rivers State and Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi. He didn’t push when Amaechi pushed probably because of his health. He also must have felt that if he moved, former president, Goodluck Jonathan would have started pursuing him.
“Secondly, he has a lot of cases and questions to answer with EFCC; he wasn’t probably sure that if he remained in PDP they won’t put him in chains. He, like Nwobodo, joined APC to close up; Ken Nnamani joined because of EEDC. They are there for protection,” he alleged.
Ejiofor decried what he termed lack of ideological principles among Nigerian politicians.
“We do not play politics on ideological principles. If you play politics on ideological principles, you can have a policy and stand at a place. We are playing politics of stomach; so we run to where there is food.
“People who are now in PDP in Enugu are there because of what to eat not because they like the party. People who are defecting to APC are doing so to evade probe, because APC does selective probe. If you are in APC you are not considered corrupt, but you are considered as corrupt if you are not in APC. That is the problem.
“Both parties are playing politics of individuals; it is not because you have an idea. I don’t know any other reason any politician will have for joining APC.
“For example, it is difficult to understand why a man who made his way up in his political party and became the president of the country, would because of a personal interest or provocation tear his membership card. Can we talk of how somebody who became a Senate President under the platform of a party would overnight switch over to another party. If they are all switching over to another party, who will rebuild the PDP?
“If there is a problem, why not strive to correct it. If you lost in an election you go to drawing board and start afresh. But in our country, if you lose in the primaries, you move over to another party tomorrow to try your luck.