Mass Defection Looms In Cross River As Council Officials, Political Appointees Pledged To Leave PDP With Governor Ayade
By Anietie Akpan, Calabar
As speculation grows about Governor Benedict Ayade’s alleged plans to leave the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), council chairmen, councilors, and political appointees have vowed to join him if he does so.
Yesterday, all 18 council chairmen, vice chairmen, 196 councilors, and over 6,000 appointees held a rally in support of Ayade, pledging to float or sink with him.
Ayade had been at odds with members of the National Assembly and other stakeholders, resulting in a tense relationship with the opposition, forcing him to stay neutral for some time.
Emmanuel Offiong Bassey, Chairman of Akpabuyo Council, said that because God sent Governor Ayade to save the state, Cross River people will support his actions, programs, and policies to the end.
“By holding the rally, we are sending a message that we are behind Ayade and will go to any length to ensure that he receives the help he needs to succeed. We’re able to go down with him, sink or swim.
“ Because his foot soldiers are on the field, our leader should go to sleep. “Whoever plays with the fact that Ayade is the leader of the PDP in Cross River State does so at his or her own peril,” they said.
The rally was organized in appreciation and support of Ayade’s vigorous industrialization campaign, which has resulted in the establishment of several industries across the state, according to the council chairmen.
In response, Ayade thanked the council chairmen for their help, saying that the social contract he signed with the citizens was meant to get Cross River out of the doldrums, and that he promised to keep creating jobs through industrialisation.
Ayade charged Cross River citizens to unite and defend the state and its infrastructure from divisive and disruptive agents, expressing concern about the presence of foreign powers in the state’s politics.
Peter Ojie, the governor’s senior special adviser on political matters, said Ayade’s ability to industrialize the state despite limited resources demonstrated his competence, adding, “The rally is also intended to demonstrate that the support we gave him in 2015 and 2019 was not in vain.”
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