Two weeks before the presidential election, controversy has hit the Labour Party in the South-West as its leaders announced the collapse of its entire structure in the region into the All Progressives Congress.
The party leaders also declared support for the presidential candidate of the APC, Bola Tinubu.
Speaking with journalists in Akure, the Ondo State capital, on Monday, the South-West Chairman of the LP, Mr Omotoso Banji, said their journey into the APC was facilitated by the National Coordinator of the South-West Agenda For Asiwaju Tinubu, 2023, Dr Dayo Adeyeye, and other members of the group.
But the Ondo State Chairman of the Labour Party, Mrs Remilekun Ojo, dismissed the collapse of the party structure, saying the event was attended by “a few dozen people” who claimed to be the South-West chapter of the party.
However, Omotoso, who led the party leadership to collapse its structure, said the leaders of LP decided to quit the party because it was not viable and lacked the clout to win the forthcoming general elections.
He said, “Labour Party presently is a shaking platform for anybody to contest. Labour Party is a failure platform for anybody to contest, I don’t know Peter Obi and I’m less concerned about him but I’m concerned about those who are celebrating the Labour Party mediocre within Nigeria.
“In view of this, we, leaders of the Labour Party in the South-West, have decided to leave the party because we have a lot of mediocre there and what they are looking for is money, they are not ready to serve Nigeria.
“We are the pillars of that party in the South-West, and to the glory of God Almighty, we have pulled down the structures today ( Monday). I was so surprised to hear from the DG of the party, Akin Osuntokun. We don’t know him in Labour Party. Akin Osuntokun is representing his own personal interest.”
The National Coordinator of the SWAGA 2023, Dr Dayo Adeyeye, while receiving the defectors, charged them and others APC members across the South-West to go back to their various polling units and work for Tinubu to win the forthcoming presidential poll.
Disagreeing, in a statement, Ondo State Chairman of the Labour Party, Ojo said, “The meeting was chaired by an expelled member, Banji Omotoso, who was the then Caretaker State Chairman in Ekiti State from 2017 to 2019.”
Ojo said the LP in the South-West and in the six geopolitical regions “remains one and indivisible” and under no circumstances would the party think of merging with any party, “not even the APC that has brought untold hardship and suffering to the nation.”