The defection of all three legislators representing President Goodluck Jonathan, senator, member House of Representatives and state House of Assembly was a jolt from the blues.
By Samuel Oyadongha
After gifting the presidency to the opposition All Progressives Congress, APC, the defection of the legislators underscored the inclement political weather the outgoing president is bound to face when he returns home.
Senator Clever Marcus Ikisikpo, representing Bayelsa East, President Jonathan’s senatorial district, who led the other two legislators, Hon Nado Karibo representing Ogbia federal constituency and Hon Azibola Paul Omekwe representing Ogbia constituency I in the Bayelsa State House of Assembly to defect had been particularly close to the president. He had sojourned with the president through thick and thin since 1999.
Ikisikpo, a former classroom teacher, had been elected a member of the Bayelsa State House of Assembly to represent Jonathan’s Ogbia constituency III in 1999.
Following that, he proceeded to the House of Representatives in 2003 where he was re-elected in 2007 at the same time that Dr. Jonathan emerged as vice-president. Ikisikpo was to emerge as a pawn in the remote fight between the president and former Governor Timipre Sylva in 2011.
When Ikisikpo got the ticket to represent the Bayelsa East Senate seat in 2011 many believed that it was because of his closeness to the president. However, that fact did not reflect that he got the seat at the pleasure of Sylva who had fallen out very badly with the occupant of that seat, Senator Nimi Barigha-Amange who was also a very close associate of the president.
But even at that only few until recently would comprehend that Ikisikpo, regarded as one of the longest serving PDP chieftains from the Ogbia Ijaw speaking stock could abandon his kinsman and benefactor, President Jonathan by dumping the president and his party, PDP in their most challenging times.