A former Imo State Governor, Chief Achike Udenwa; Senator Chris Anyanwu and General Muhammadu Buhariâ€™s lawyer, Chief Mike Ahamba (SAN), are among notable politicians in the state that have signified their intention to defect to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
President Goodluck Jonathan is expected in Owerri, the state capital, on February 21 to welcome the defectors, who are from the All Progressives Congress (APC) and All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) into the ruling party.
Chairman of Imo State Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme (SURE-), Chief Longers Anyanwu, who is also the Chairman of the Local Organising Committee (LOC) of the rally to receive the defectors, yesterday broke the news to journalists in Abuja.
He said: â€œThe rally of February 21 is of utmost importance to the state because it is also going to showcase what the SURE-P has been doing since my assumption of office as the chairman. Also, the 3,500 SURE-P beneficiaries who have embarked on a massive clean-up of the Owerri city and other metropolitan cities of the state will be paraded to welcome the president and his entourage.
â€œAlso on hand to welcome President Goodluck Jonathan is the collaborating 650 presidents of town unions in Imo State who have acclaimed SURE-P as one of the initiatives to reduce crime by creating employment for the people.â€
Giving reasons why Owerri would be agog for the president during the visit, Anyanwu said: â€œFor once, the programme has opened up the state to the unemployed graduates and other artisans in the state. This has a very positive impact on the state as it has reduced crimes, especially kidnapping and other related crises.â€
According to him, able-bodied men, youths and the vulnerable have been provided employment and by implication, provided means of livelihood for their various families.
On the return of Udenwa to PDP, Anyanwu said: â€œThis is to show the world that PDP in the state has been repositioned and all the founding fathers and members that left the party are gradually coming back.â€
Udenwa, a former governor of the state, left PDP for the APC, while Anyanwu was first elected a senator on the platform of PDP, but later defected to APGA.