2023: PDP, APC bicker over defections

By Jide Orintunsin, Abuja

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) on Monday engaged in a fresh war of words over reports of impending defections by their members ahead of the 2023 general elections.

While the PDP alleged that some disgruntled APC members were trying to woo its members to form “a third force,”  the ruling party said that its membership was “is intact.”

It described the “third force” theory by the opposition PDP as an ‘hallucination of an ailing party.’’

PDP spokesman Kola Ologbodiyan had while featuring on Arise TV morning talk show, also said his party was   not bothered about the part of the country the APC would want to zone its ticket for the presidential election.

He said: “We are aware in the PDP  that there are those who are losing out in APC and they are contemplating a third force just as they did in 2014 and as such, they are looking at coming to the PDP and break the party by taking members of the PDP to create a new political party.

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“The PDP is a holistic political party and we are not going to allow distractions. The leadership of the PDP under Prince Uche Secondus is steadying the party for the purpose for which Nigerians are aligning with us come 2023.”

Ologbondiyan also said that the National Executive Council(NEC) of the party would meet on Thursday “ and to consider all issues lingering in the nation and our party.”

But, APC’s  Deputy National Publicity Secretary, Yekini Nabena in a statement dismissed the PDP  “Third Force” theory.

Nabena said  while APC was intact,  the PDP was battling to stop defections by its members.

His terse statement reads: “As the  PDP runs from pillar to post to stop the current gale of defections by its members, it  is already hallucinating on a political ‘third force’ ahead of the 2023 general elections. Pitiful!

“While the PDP’s panic is understandable, it is wrongly expressed. For us in the APC, our membership is intact. There is no new political party being created to form a political ‘third force’ ahead of 2023. Put correctly, the gale of defection from the PDP is to the APC as widely reported. And a lot more are expected in the coming months.”