In less than three weeks after ex-military ruler Ibrahim Babangida ‘s controversial statement vilifying President Muhammadu Buhari, his Minna hill top home became haven to his party’s henchmen.
The members of the National Working Committee of the opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) visited Babandiga, one of the founding fathers of the party.
The National Chairman of the party, Mr Uche Secondus, led the committee on the courtesy visit to the former military president on Saturday.
Babangida, a retired Nigerian Army General, who was President of Nigeria from 27 August 1985 to 26 August 1993, also welcomed the party leaders.
Meanwhile, as Babangida was receiving the PDP leaders, Chief John Oyegun, National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), on Saturday received 34,826 members of PDP in Niger, who defected.
Among the defectors are the state Deputy Chairman of the PDP, Alhaji Aminu Yusuf, former Speaker of the state Assembly, Alhaji Adamu Usman, a former Attorney General, Alhaji Abdullahi Wuse among others.
Oyegun said in Minna at a rally to receive the defectors that Nigerians must shun sentiment and support the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari to set the nation on a new path of growth and progress.
He said that the country require “people of principle’’ to help fight for the success of the programmes of the APC.
“APC needs sincere soldiers as leaders, people who are ready to join the fight, because God entrusted Buhari to us to salvage the nation and its economy,” he said.
He therefore urged the new APC members to support President Buhari in the efforts to restore the economy through the revitalisation of agriculture and solid minerals sectors.
Oyegun noted that already, government support to agriculture had helped to drastically bring down rice importation.
The APC national chairman stressed that the Buhari administration had also raised power generation to 7,000 megawatts and that the figure would go up by 50 percent after the completion of the Mambila hydro power project.
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He noted that the increase in power supply would help boost industrialisation and job creation in the country.
Alhaji Aminu Yusuf, PDP state Deputy Chairman, said they joined the APC to assist in developing the state.
“By the time elections are over, you don’t talk about parties anymore, instead you talk about development of the state.
“The party approached me to come and join them and assist the government build the state. We are coming with our skills and experience to assist the government in developing the state,” he said.