Barely five days to the September 19th governorship election, former Provost Marshal of the Nigerian Army, Brigadier-General Idada Ikponmwen (rtd) and numerous members of a group called Friends for SIMPLE Agenda over the weekend defected from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the All Progressives Congress (APC) and pledged to supports the party’s candidate, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu.
The SIMPLE agenda is the manifesto of Ize-Iyamu which he said he would use to reposition governance in the state.
Ikponmwen who is a founding member of the PDP in the state accused the party of selling its ticket to its candidate and that the party lacks the capacity to lead the people.
He said: “We believe he is a serious politician, a grassroots politician who has been in government in very high capacities and we Friends for SIMPLE Agenda are supporting the man who came with that agenda of detailed programme, our people must be moved from poverty, hunger and want to governance that is people-oriented, human and properly democratic because we do not want to leave anything to chances we don’t believe in wake and see.
“Wake and see is not a programme. We do not believe in four plus four because four plus four is deceitful. It is standing the constitution upside down because the constitution guarantees four years for a winner if he is not impeached or otherwise removed, it is four years, if he must continue after four years he must deserve it. So you don’t demand four plus four, you deserve it because the constitution doesn’t guarantee four plus four.
“We do not believe that there should be no leader in our areas. There must be leaders, anybody who says he doesn’t believe in leadership doesn’t even believe that his father is a leader or his mother is a leader. We all have leaders, even in heaven are there no leaders? So when you now start fighting your leaders and then renouncing your party people that brought you into power, that is a sign of ingratitude especially if you look at from the point that you said you have no money to service people yet how much does it take to patronize party leaders and at the same time you spent billions to buy a party which you are not a member so both the party that sold its candidacy to a stranger and the man that bought cannot be trusted, they are pursuing personal agenda, they are shortchanging people. PDP has never been a reliable party anyway; I was a pioneer member of the PDP in Edo state.”
He said membership of Friends of SIMPLE Agenda is in thousands across the three senatorial districts of the state.