No fewer than 5,000 members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Lagos state on Friday defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN)reports that the defectors were received into the APC at an elaborate ceremony at the ACME Road secretariat of the party.
NAN reports that some 500 members of PDP had on July 3 also defected to APC in the state.
The defectors, who are members of the United Niger Delta Forum, were led into their new party by Mr Gabriel Ese, the group’s leader.
They were received by the Lagos state Chairman of the APC, Alhaji Tunde Balogun, with some other party officials.
Speaking at the occasion, Balogun said the party was excited to receive the new members into the fold of the party.
He said the decision of the former PDP members to join the party reflected the growing confidence in the party.
Balogun commended the new members for their decision to join what he called the progressive train, assuring them that the party would do its best to give them a sense of belonging.
“We are happy that you have made the decision to join the progressive train today and we assure you that we will do our best to make you feel at home.
“Even as you are just joining us, we have accepted you as part and parcel of the APC and we will not discriminate against you.
“I assure you, you will not regret joining the APC. We shall work together like brothers and sisters to ensure that APC is greater than what it is in the state,” he said.
Balogun implored the new members to show commitment and give their best in order to ensure victory for the party in 2019 general elections.
The party chairman also advised them to obtain their Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) in order to participate in the elections.
Balogun said the party had commenced registration of members nationwide and urged the new members to register to be fully integrated.
Also speaking, Ese said he and other members of the group were delighted to leave the PDP to join “the progressive party”.
He said the decision of the group to leave the PDP was because of the strides of Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode in Lagos state.
Ese said they were also motivated by the charismatic leadership of the national leader of the party, Chief Bola Tinubu and the achievements of the APC at the national level.
“We are pledging our full allegiance to the party because we have realised this is the party to be.
“We are so happy to be here and we will do our best to take the party to the next level, ” he said.
Ese said that there were about 500,000 registered members of the group in the state, saying that they would be mobilised them to obtain their PVCs in order to vote for APC in 2019.