The former governorship candidate of the Social Democratic Party, Natasha Akpoti-Uduaghan, has revealed why she switched to the Peoples Democratic Party, Naija News 247 reports.
In a phone conversation on Saturday, the philanthropist turned politician revealed to the public why she defected.
Natasha hinged her action on the weak structure of her former party arguing that the SDP lacked such structure that was being pulled by the PDP.
“I’ve come to realise some mistakes in the past elections I held, which was the Senate and the Kogi Governorship election, 2019.
“I’ve realised that popularity alone does not help. The party structure helps a lot. From the result of the Senate Kogi Central in 2019, I, in SDP, had about 48,300 votes while the PDP sitting senator Ogembe, had 18,100. That means I defeated the sitting Senator, with over 30,000 votes, and then you begin to wonder what happened.
“Ordinarily, I would have had about 67,000 or 70,000 votes or much more. But I didn’t have strong Polling Unit agents. Even, Ogembe, the little he had, he was able to secure.
“Systemic organization goes a long way in helping any candidate,” She said.
As Natasha noted, if she was to contest again, she needed to do something regarding the structure of the campaign.
“So I asked myself, what I would do if I were to contest again,” she said.
Natasha noted how she had been the single person maintaining the SDP structure.
“It’s extremely difficult for a single person to maintain structures across the state.
“I was the most formidable person in SDP in the whole country. I was supporting the national; I was supporting many other states that were calling on me. I had to bear the burden of the entire Kogi state SDP,” she said.
“As at the time I contested, there weren’t more than 2,000 card-carrying members of the SDP, and you begin to ask where the 38,000 votes came from,” Natasha said.
She noted that it was because people from other political parties came out to vote for her, but they could not stand for her at the polling units to defend her votes.
When asked what her followers’ fates were upon her defection to another party, she said that she was still the same Natasha Akpoti.
According to her, I’m still the same Natasha, still carrying the same vision, with the same vigor and same character, just much better. I’m still counting on their support.
On March 5, the National Working Committee of the PDP led by the chairman, Dr Iyiorcha Ayu, were at the wedding of Natasha to High Chief Emmanuel Oritsejolomi Uduaghan in Kogi state, a move that was regarded as an effort to woo her to the PDP.
Natasha refused to speak until she had declared her intentions for the forthcoming election.