Over a thousand members of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) have defected to the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Mashegu Local Government Area (LGA) of Niger State

Mashegu is one of the LGAs in Zone C, where the incumbent governor, Abubakar Sani Bello hails from.

The ceremony for the decampees, who cut across all the wards in the LGA, took place at the Government Secondary School Saho-Rami.

The Tuesday's defection was the second within the last three months as many APC members have decamped to the PDP at the governor’s home country of Kontagora.

Receiving the defectors, a former Speaker of Niger State House of Assembly, Muhammad Muhammad Alkali, and a former commissioner for Religious Affairs in the cabinet of former Governor Muazu Babangida Aliyu, Shehu Haruna Kumbashi, said the defection was a testimony that the APC administration had failed the people.

They promised that the PDP would carry everybody along as a family, adding that the party had learnt from its mistake and was ready to reclaim power from the ruling APC.

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Speaking on behalf of the defectors, Manir Muhammad said they took the decision to rejoin the PDP because Governor Sani Bello had reneged on his promise to address the infrastructural challenges facing the LGA which necessitated their support for him.

Muhammad said the governor could no longer make any significant impact in the council within the next one year, going by the fact that there was no budget provision to address the deplorable condition of the roads and the lack of power supply in most communities in the council.

“It is disheartening that having promised to address infrastructural problems in our council, which led to overwhelming support for the governor, who is from our zone, he abandoned us,” he said, adding that “we are better off under the PDP and that is why we have rejoined the party.”

Also speaking, the PDP chairman in the council, Sani Musa, said the defection was also a sign that the PDP was poised to retake the power it “temporarily lost” in 2015.

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