I Regret Anointing Ayade As Cross River Governor, Says Imoke - THE ENCOUNTER NEWS


Tuesday, May 25, 2021

I Regret Anointing Ayade As Cross River Governor, Says Imoke

Liyel Imoke

CALABAR - Former Governor of Cross River State and leader of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Liyel Imoke, at the weekend, declared that he regretted anointing Benedict Ayade as governor in 2015.

Imoke stated this at a media briefing in Calabar while reacting to claims that he sold the state to the incumbent governor for N2 billion.

The Guardian recalled that Ayade defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC) on Saturday, May 22, 2021, even as the APC had laid siege to the PDP secretariat with armed policemen and armoured vehicle at its gate.

“I have to come back, because I thought I have retired and handed the leadership of the party and the state to some people, thinking that they will keep the tradition. There is a traditional institute, but they did not keep the tradition, so we have come back to redeem our party and to take it back,” Imoke said.

Imoke, who sidestepped aspirants like former Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Fidelis Ugbo, Joe Agi (SAN) and others for Ayade in 2015, said: “I took all responsibilities and risks for Ayade’s emergence.

“In 2023, let us give leadership to the youths, who understand the importance of generational change because the time has come for generational change.”

Speaking earlier, the PDP Caretaker Committee Chairman, Effiok Cobham, pledged that the party would take over the secretariat from Ayade, who now belongs to the APC.

Cobham, who was Deputy Governor to Imoke, noted that it was shocking to learn that the party secretariat it had occupied since 1999 had been taken over by an opposition party.

“We are still the occupants of the property because we paid for it and we will take it over shortly. We don’t want problems, so we plead with them to vacate the secretariat,” he said.

On his part, a representative of Ogoja-Yala Federal constituency in the House of Representatives, Jarigbe Agom Jarigbe, said: “I have been vindicated because I have been at the forefront and I waited for this day. We shall not take Ayade’s defection for granted. We shall consolidate the PDP.”

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