Governor Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia State in South-East Nigeria has said the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) remains the party of choice in the State and as such, all hands must be on deck to consolidate on the gains and strength of the party in the State.
The Governor stated this on Sunday at the Dr Micheal Okpara Auditorium Umuahia while addressing a meeting of the Stakeholders of the party, the first of such meetings for the year 2021.
He stressed that the party remains as strong as ever in the State and restated his strong membership of the party and dismissing rumours of his alleged defection plans as unfounded.
The Governor challenged stakeholders of the party at all levels to close ranks and work in harmony with leaders of the party.
Ikpeazu also reassured party stakeholders that there is no cause for alarm over the rumoured defection of party members to other parties, stating that the two persons who left the party did so because he refused to make a commitment to hand over to them automatic tickets of the party for the 2023 elections.
The Governor noted that he had no regrets over his stance because it was too early in the day to make such commitments to any person, stating that when the time is right, the party will choose her candidates.
He advised party members not to allow personal ambitions to override party supremacy at a time when the general elections are almost two years away.
The Governor congratulated the newly elected Executive Chairmen of the 17 Local Government Areas in the State and urged them to embark on people-oriented projects in their areas and always ensure that they keep the communication channels open between them and members of the party in their councils.
Ikpeazu assured party members that the baton he received from the last administration will remain intact with him and by the grace of God, the next administration in the State will be a PDP government.
Earlier, while welcoming stakeholders to the meeting, the State Chairman of the party, Rt Hon Allwell Asiforo Okere told the members that the meeting is part of the strategies of the State Working Committee of the party to keep key stakeholders abreast of happenings in the party as well as seek their inputs into various programs of the party.
He commended the synergy between the State Government, the party executive council in the State, as well as members of the National Assembly.