Ilorin — Ahead of 2023 general elections, one of the confidants of Kwara State Governor and chairman of his inauguration committee for the May 29, 2019 swearing-in ceremony, Senator Suleiman Makanjuola Ajadi and his teeming supporters have dumped the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) for African Democratic Congress (ADC).
Ajadi was later elected as the ADC’s senatorial candidate for Kwara South for next year’s general elections.
Also at the weekend, thousands of APC members in Baruten Local Government Area of the state defected to Social Democratic Party (SDP).
The defectors were led by an aggrieved House of Assembly Aspirant, Mr. Umar Sariki Usman, the son of the Emir of Yashikira, who decried the alleged highhandedness and impunity that have characterised the party.
Usman stressed that imposition of candidates against local zoning arrangements is now the order of day.
However, the defection of Senator Ajadi from APC to ADC ahead of the 2023 poll might not be unconnected with the alleged controversies that marred the just concluded APC’s primaries in the state.
During the primaries it was alleged that leadership of the party were said to have imposed some members as the party’s candidates that led to pocket of protests at wards and local levels of the party.
Sources close to the APC said that non-resolution of the issues prompted many aggrieved members to leave the party in search of alternative platforms to actualise their ambitions.
On Saturday, Senator Ajadi and his teeming supporters publicly dumped the APC for ADC in Ilorin.
He was later emerged the ADC flag bearer for Kwara South Senatorial District unopposed during the party’s primary on Saturday.
The primary was conducted under the supervision of the National Vice Chairman of ADC, Mr. Peter Edeh, and the Independent National Electoral Commission.
All efforts made to speak with Senator Ajadi proved abortive as he was not ready to speak with journalists.
Ajadi said: “After I have submitted my letter of resignation to APC Secretariat by Monday (today) then I will have audience with journalists.”
In another related development, thousands of the members of the ruling APC in Baruten Local Government Area of the state publicly defected from the party to the opposition SDP ahead of the next general elections.
The Makama Yashikira, Mr. Adamu Yusuf, said: “We have gentleman agreement of power rotation between Okuta and Yashikira divide making up our constituency. It is now the turn of Yashikira to occupy the assembly seat, sadly the APC decided to breach the agreement and gave Hon. Yakubu Salihu-Danladi, the speaker of House of Assembly return ticket against the rotation.
“I want to let you understand that an average Batonu man will always stand by his word, that’s why we’ve decided to leave the APC and pitch our tent with the SDP is the party and no going back.”
Receiving the defectors, the State Chairman of SDP, Mr. Azeez Afolabi, who led other members of the State Working Committee, promised the defectors a level playing field, stressing that the SDP abhorred imposition, highhandedness and cheating as fairness, justice and equity is the watchword of the party.
The defectors in turn promised to erase the memory of APC from the local government after which they did a symbolic burning of the broom (APC logo).