Emmanuel Addeh in Yenagoa
The Bayelsa State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday rebutted reports that the former Senator representing Bayelsa East Senatorial District, in the National Assembly, Nimi Barigha-Amange, defected from the party to the All Progressives Congress (APC).
State Chairman of the PDP, Chief Moses Cleopas, said in a statement that Barigha-Amange ceased to be a member of the PDP shortly before the February 23, 2019 National Assembly elections when he left the PDP to join the African Democratic Congress (ADC).
Cleopas explained that the former lawmaker defected from the PDP to the ADC to contest against the PDP when he failed to secure the Senatorial ticket of the party for Bayelsa East Senatorial District.
Cleopas said that Amange’s claim that he defected from the PDP to the APC because of Governor Seriake Dickson’s style of leadership was an unfortunate and mischievous attempt to create the false impression of an implosion within a party that is stable.
He stressed that the PDP family in Bayelsa State was not aware of Amange as a member of the party after having defected into the ADC early this year.
He said: “There is a misleading report that Barigha-Amange has defected from the PDP to the APC. The fact is that he is not a member of our party. He defected from the PDP to the ADC, to contest against us in the February 16, 2019 National Assembly election and lost.
“Senator Barigha-Amange is not a PDP leader and the public should discountenance this misleading claim. This unfortunate claim is part of a calculated attempt to create an erroneous impression of an implosion in a party that is stable.
“The PDP in the state knows those who are genuine members. Barigha-Amange is not one of us and he should desist from misinforming the public with the intent to cause mischief.”
Cleopas said that the Bayelsa State Chapter of the PDP was too strong to be bothered by a false defection masterminded by people who are troubled by the strong internal cohesion within the party.
Cleopas who debunked Barigha-Amange’s accusation against the governor stressed that he had never seen a leader who had adopted a more consultative approach to the resolution of issues than Dickson who he said ensures that stakeholders are consulted in all critical decisions of the party.
He said that before his defection in January, Barigha-Amange had been the one producing the councilor from his Ward.
He added that Governor who he wrongfully accused of dictatorial tendencies could not identify the PDP candidate for Nembe Local Government Area in the last local government chairmanship election, Hon West Alalibo, until his victory.
Cleopas argued that the former lawmaker sponsored a candidate who lost to the PDP Candidate, Ms Dorcas Kuku, a daughter of PDP Board of Trustees member, Mrs. Remi Kuku in his Ward in Nembe Local Government Area in the last election.
He added that contrary to untruths being peddled against the governor by Barigha-Amange, the Vice Chairman of Nembe Local Government Area, Alison Abel, was collectively nominated by the Deputy Governor Rear Admiral Gboribiogha John Jonah, Barigha-Amange and other stakeholders.
Barigha-Amange had said that he ‘dumped the PDP’ because of the ‘authoritarian’ attitude of the incumbent governor, stressing that he was ‘enslaved by only one man who regarded himself as emperor’