In a major political shake-up, the Delta Unity Group (DUG), a prominent wing of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), has declared for the All Progressives Congress (APC) and committed to voting for all of the party’s candidates in the 2023 general elections.
The DUG, known as the strategic and intellectual arm of the PDP in Delta State, had previously coalesced around former Delta Governor Olorogun David Edevbie, a choice that was rejected by current Governor Ifeanyi Okowa in favour of the controversial and unpopular House Speaker, Sheriff Oborevwori.
At a special declaration rally on Sunday, 22 January, thousands of DUG members, led by its chairman, three-time member of the House of Representatives, Daniel Reyenieju, and ex-house speakers, Chief Monday Igbuya and Olisa Imegwu, formally declared for the APC.
Reyenieju stated that the DUG was founded to support the best candidate of the PDP, but when that couldn’t be found, they looked for a candidate who could continue Edevbie’s modernization program and found that capacity in Senator Ovie Omo-Agege, the APC’s governorship candidate.
Former House Speaker Igbuya criticized Governor Okowa for cutting entitlements and increasing debt, while Chief Evans Iwurie, a prominent DUG leader, called Okowa an embarrassment to Delta State, Nigeria, and the medical profession.
Senator Omo-Agege, who is also the Deputy Senate President, expressed his excitement at the development, stating that with the support of the DUG, which makes up two-thirds of the Delta PDP, the APC can easily defeat Okowa and the PDP in the upcoming elections.
He promised to ensure just and equitable governance if elected as governor, addressing issues such as poor healthcare and education.
The state chairman of the APC, Elder Omeni Sobotie, emphasized that with the support of the DUG, the party is now stronger than ever and ready to defeat Governor Okowa and the PDP in the upcoming elections.
The defection of the DUG is a significant blow to the PDP, as it loses a key faction in the state, and a boost to the APC, as it gains a significant number of influential leaders and supporters.
The political landscape in Delta State has shifted dramatically with this development, and it will be interesting to see how this impacts the upcoming elections.