Nigeria: Why I Joined APC - Elisha Abbo

25 November 2020

He said he actually left the party for his state governor, Ahmadu Fintiri, so he can replace him (the governor)

Elisha Abbo, the Adamawa State senator who announced his defection from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), has said he left the party for his state governor, Ahmadu Fintiri, so he could replace him (the governor).

He disclosed this to journalists during a briefing on Wednesday.

Mr Abbo made known his decision to defect in a letter read out by the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, at the start of the day's plenary.

The announcement was made amidst cheers from mostly APC senators at the chamber.

He also said he decided to leave the PDP because of the "mismanagement" of the party's issues by Governor Ahmadu Fintri of Adamawa State, which he said has led to the recent crisis in the state.

"Thus, in living up to the expectation of the good people of Adamawa North Senatorial District, I hereby defect from the PDP to the APC with effect from today being Wednesday, the 25th day of November, 2020," part of the statement read.

The lawmaker was asked for the real reason he is leaving the PDP. He was also asked if he was overwhelmed by the governor and the crisis in the party, hence seeking solace in the APC.

In his response, the lawmaker said that internal democracy in the party has suffered in the last one year since the governor assumed office.

He said he was never overwhelmed by the governor, whom he described as insecure. He also said he could not be overwhelmed because he fought hard to bring the governor into power.

"If there is no crisis, how do you have another party in the PDP? There is a crisis in the party in Adamawa State and the governor is the cause of the crisis. He is insecure.

"I cannot be overwhelmed because I know how hard I fought to bring Governor Fintiri to power. Go and check the record, I am not boasting. I am the main man that fought to bring Fintiri to power.

"My local government, Mubi North, is the second most populous in the state. The outgoing governor of Adamawa State is from Mubi North. I am the PDP there. Every PDP steward is from Mubi North, yet they couldn't defeat me. I defeated all of them because I moved with the grassroots.

"If anyone is saying he is more powerful than me, then let 2023 come, we will meet them there. One thing about elections is that today, people are becoming wiser and wiser.

"So, to answer you, the governor did not defeat me. The governor did not chase me out. I actually gave way so that I will go and take his seat from him," he said.

When asked to respond to a PDP statement calling for his resignation, he simply wondered why the party did not ask Governor David Umahi of Ebonyi State, who recently defected to the APC, to resign.

"Did they ask Umahi to resign? Go and ask them. Governor Umahi just defected from PDP to APC as a sitting governor of Ebonyi State. Did they ask him to resign? Tell them to resign from the secretariat." He said.

His defection comes weeks after the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court in Maitama ordered him to pay N50 million as compensation to Osimibibra Warmate, a lady he assaulted in 2019.

PREMIUM TIMES had in 2019, reported that the senator was caught on camera assaulting a woman in Abuja - an incident which occurred barely three months after he was elected a senator and a month before he was sworn in on June 11.

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