By; VITALIS UGOH, Calabar
The attention of the office of governor of Cross River State, Senator Ben Ayade, has been drawn to an orchestrated and sponsored protest at the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja wherein urchins were hired to stage a protest demanding the governor be refused admission into the All Progressives Congress (APC).
In a statement issued and signed by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor and SA on Media, Mr. Christian Ita said “for one, it is laughable as it is ludicrous that the same characters who were only able to muster five street urchins and paid them N1,000 each to protest against Ayade last week this time around resorted to bare-faced lies about his purported moves to join the APC”.
“The characters have also been feeding social media platforms with a statement purportedly made by Professor Ayade slamming federal legislators who recently defected from the APC to the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, as enemies of Nigeria
“These are desperate times and therefore it is not surprising to see this kind of cheap resort to cause distraction in the polity.”
For emphasis, governor Ayade, he said, has never and will never contemplate leaving the PDP for APC.
“The governor has at every fora restated his loyalty and membership of the PDP. Upon his well celebrated return to Calabar last week after two weeks vacation abroad, he again unequivocally proclaimed PDP as his party while addressing thousands of party supporters.”
Ita said “last Friday, Ayade was at the empowerment programme of a PDP Senator, Rose Oko, in company of his predecessor, Liyel Imoke.
“For three years now, Ayade’s purported interest in APC has been a constant refrain and engagement of fifth columnists bent on embarrassing him, he added.
“Evidently, certain interests are not comfortable with Ayade’s special relationship with President Muhammadu Buhari and construe same to mean possible defection to the APC.
“But the governor has time and again explained that his relationship with the President is defined by governance and not politics.
“Ayade is a loyal party man, he therefore remains a committed member of the party assiduously working towards the victory of the party in 2019.
“Just as they have failed repeatedly in their febrile effort to cause distraction and undermine governor Ayade’s commitment to delivering democratic dividends to the people, they have failed yet again to pitch him against his beloved party, the PDP,” Ita added.