The Labour Party (LP) on Friday suffered a setback as all its 21 Local Government Chairmen defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The defected chairmen defected to the ruling APC with scores of their supporters.
They were received by the state APC chairman, Abdullahi Bello, at the Lugard House, Lokoja.
The leader of the defectors, Kayode Awe, said they decided to collapse their structure into the APC to support the party’s governorship candidate, Usman Ododo, in the forthcoming November 11 governorship poll.
Mr Awe also said their defection became imperative when they realised the LP was no longer viable in the state.
“I was in APC before I left to join the Labour Party. I am back today with more people, and we are ready to add value. LP got more than 76,000 votes in the last presidential election; we still have the same people who worked to achieve that feat.
“Indeed, Labour Party structure in the state was a formidable one that delivered massive votes to the party’s presidential candidate, Peter Obi, without inducement or support, but we want to do the same to APC and Ododo this time around,” he said.
Mr Awe added that their decision to collapse the LP structure into the APC was to join forces with the progressives to actualise the ‘Kogi Agenda’.
Similarly, the LP chairman for Bassa LGA, who doubles as the chairman of the LP Chairmen Forum, Jimba Emmanuel, noted that a political party was just a platform for power.
He said the governorship candidate of the LP lacked the required quality, hence their decision to abandon “the sinking ship”.
The Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Wemi Jones, commended Kogi’s “Obidient Movement” leader, Mr Awe, for his doggedness and mobilisation ability.
Receiving the defectors, the Kogi APC chairman, Abdullahi Bello, said, “APC is a party that believes in development, equality and has a good reward system.”