More than 12, 562 members of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Zamfara, including former commissioners and local councils officials, on Thursday, defected to the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
The defectors were formally received into the PDP by Governor Bello Matawalle in Gusau.
Among the APC defectors were three former commissioners, Idris Keta, Abdulkadir Ahmed and Aliyu Tsafe along with their loyalists and supporters.
Others were two former local government council chairmen, Musa Tsafe and Ahmed Kantoma, as well as two former Directors-General, Bashir Kwaren Ganuwa and Saminu Lawali.
All the defectors are from Tsafe Local Government Area of the state.
In their separate speeches, Idris Keta and Habibu Alo said they were drawn to the PDP because of the peace being enjoyed by their communities under the present leadership of governor Matawalle.
They added that by addressing the security challenges facing the state within a short period, the governor has earned their trust and would support him to further ensure sustainable peace in the state.
In his remarks, Mr Matawalle commended the defectors for the “wise decision” to join the PDP and assured that they would receive equal treatment as any other party member.
The governor reiterated his government’s determination to improve the living standards of the people including those affected by banditry.
He said that the government would roll out a social intervention programme to cater for the wellbeing of those displaced by banditry in Zamfara.
He added that the resettlement process of all the IDPs in the state had reached the advance stage with the support of President Muhammadu Buhari.
Mr Matawalle assured that the government would not rest until all displaced people were resettled and repentant bandits reintegrated into the society.
Earlier, the state PDP Chairman, Ibrahim Mallaha said the party would continue to unite its members for the good of the state.
He assured the newly registered party members that they were entitled to all rights and privileges as provided in the party’s constitution.