The senator representing Borno South, Ali Ndume, has said that Senate President Bukola Saraki’s defection from the All Progressives Congress (APC), to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), is not a threat to the party’s chances or that of President Muhammadu Buhari in the 2019 general elections.
Speaking on Channels TV on Wednesday, he admitted that although Saraki is a key figure in the party and every member is significant to its success, the defections would have little effect on the party.
He said, “When you lose even one person, especially a senator or the Senate President, you’re losing a key figure but that is not to say that anybody is indispensable in any way.
“So just because of the defection of certain individuals, which is not new in the political scene, you can’t write off or hang the future of anybody – not even the president but anybody – and I can say authoritatively without fear of controversy that the president, especially because of his integrity and the type of person he is, we need him more than he needs us.
“So, the political fortune of Mr President specifically cannot be questioned by the gale of defections,” he said.
The senator further explained that “Yes, when you lose people, you’ll be concerned. At the time we left the PDP, five or six governors left with us and about 10 or 25 of us were senators then.
“At one time, Vice President Atiku left, so this is not a new thing and it’s not a real big deal, it’s not a real threat.
“You can’t say Saraki is not important but I’m saying that he cannot do irreparable damage to the APC or the chances of President Muhammadu Buhari”.
Ndume, however, admitted that some issues within the APC, may not have been handled appropriately and some members may have been treated unfairly.
“I want to equally say that, that is not to say that the people have been fairly treated because I know that some of my colleagues have issues that would have been handled better.
“Even Saraki’s case would have been handled better,” he said.
The Senator, however, took a swipe at the PDP, saying that the party was not a better option for the defectors.
“Everybody knows that PDP is a dying party, in fact, it is a bad brand and that’s why I think they’re rebranding.
“I heard that they want to even change the name after apologising to Nigerians. So if people are going to that place that is apologising to Nigerians or thinking about changing their name, then so be it”.