Mr Stanley Osifo, a former Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential aspirant, on Thursday opened up on his support for President Muhammadu Buhari by announcing his defection to the All Progressives Congress.
Osifo, who hails from Edo State, told journalists at a press conference in Lagos that he is leaving the PDP with, at least, “10 million” of his followers after the realisation that the party was not in the best position to deliver Nigeria to the desired destination.
“I believe if not for the coincidence in the postponement of the Presidential Elections from February 16 to 23, the announcement had been planned for this day (Thursday 21, 2019). I strongly believe in the decision taken and the whole world should know,” Mr Osifo.
“Also, I want to state clearly that, my supporters and I are giving our unflinching support to the re-election of the incumbent president, Muhammadu Buhari, and all other governors, senators, from top to bottom under the platform of the APC.”
Mr Osifo’s announcement came a day after 12 presidential candidates endorsed Mr Buhari’s re-election bid.
Although Mr Osifo, 42, was the youngest among the PDP presidential aspirants before the party’s primaries in October last year, he was largely regarded as a sponsored spy within the party, a claim he denied vigorously.
On Thursday night, Mr Osifo scored the APC-led government high in terms of achievement and urged Nigerians to vote for the party.
“The fight against insurgency has been dealt with to a large extent. Many of us today will tell ourselves the truth, infrastructural development that we can see all over the country today is the handiwork of the present administration,” Mr Osifo said.
“My structure base spread across the 36 states of the federation, I can assure you today that millions of Nigerians are moving with me to the APC. We remain optimistic that nothing less than 10-15 million Nigerians, particularly those within the strata of young people who are going to move to join the APC.
“I have looked at the PDP and the APC, the fight against corruption is being carried out holistically, they are doing a lot in infrastructure, in the past few months, our GDP has increased. So all these informed my decision to decamp and support what is going on.”
The former presidential aspirant said he did not “receive anything from anybody” to influence his defection, insisting that himself and his supporters had become dissatisfied with the activities within the PDP.
“The reason why I chose the APC is based on what I see and believe. If I were to become president as a young person, I know that what has been laid down as a foundation by the APC, are things I will build on.
“I have made consultations widely, but with the party I am going to, I believe absolutely, there is no way you are moving that you would move aimlessly. I believe my future with the APC is very bright, right now, the focus should be on the elections.”
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