What looked like a revenge mission plotted in Calabar by Governor Ben Ayade against the PDP and Governor Nyesom Wike collapsed Saturday.
The PDP which will be participating in two bye-elections in Cross River State was billed to host a rally.
While the PDP was planning to host a successful event, another plot to stop the rally by those who did not want it to take place was purportedly going on.
Saturday, security men moved in, apparently to take control of the Calabar Sports Club, venue for the flag-off of PDP’s campaigns for Ogoja/Yala Federal Constituency and Akpabuyo State Constituency bye-elections.
In PDP circles, the police move was seen as an attempt, allegedly on the orders of Governor Ayade, to barricade the venue of the event.
Ben Ayade, Governor, Cross River State.
Accordingly, alarm were raised by PDP supporters in the State, accusing Ayade of being behind the plot to torpedo their rally.
In Port Harcourt, Governor Nyesom Wike who was invited to participate, sources disclose, insisted nothing would stop the PDP from going on with a peaceful political rally.
Wike who left Port Harcourt for the event in Calabar reckoned that the PDP would be finished if the rally did not hold.
Reports say Ayade and his Rivers counterpart are politically, not the best of friends.
Insiders allege that the frosty relationship between Nyesom Wike and Ben Ayade while the latter was still in the PDP reportedly contributed to the Governor’s decision to exit from the party.
It is possible that those differences, whatever they may be between the two played out on Saturday.
While addressing the rally Wike said, “When I was told that they don’t want you to hold this rally, I said this rally must hold today and I must come.
“Whatever will happen let it happen today. I told your leader that if you did not hold this rally today, then that would have been the end of PDP. But I thank God, all of you resisted it and you said enough is enough.”
Governor Wike described what transpired as a disgusting attempt by Governor Ayade and the police to prevent PDP from holding its rally for the Ogoja/Yala Federal Constituency and Akpabuyo State Constituency bye-elections.
“Let me tell you now, I have come here today to let you know I’m going to give you every support. Don’t be afraid.
“They tried it in Rivers State, we resisted them. They are trying to instigate fear in you. Don’t be afraid at all. Whatever the Cross River Government can do, PDP can do it better.”
Governor Nyesom Wike
Firing salvos at his Cross Riverian colleague, Wike remarked “I don’t understand how a governor would for ordinary federal constituency election, ordinary state election” take steps to stop “them to hold a rally. When it comes to governorship what will happen?”
Wike urged the PDP to do its utmost to rescue Cross River State from the shackles of bad governance and maladministration.
“Mobilise our people for the state constituency election and the federal constituency election. We must defeat APC”, Wike emphasized.
Turning attention to the APC, Wike blamed its Governors for the inability of President Muhammadu Buhari to initial the amended electoral act.
He alleged that the APC is afraid that it would lose the 2023 elections if the amended version of the Electoral Act is to be allowed to go into operation.
“Why they have not signed electoral act is because they are afraid of the results to be transmitted electronically.
“So, your governor here is one of those pushing for that amendment act not to be signed so they can use security to carry results.”
Saying “2019 no be 2023”, Wike urged the people of Cross River State to work tirelessly to ensure complete victory for the PDP.
How Governor Wike, accused of meddling in Cross River politics by Ayade’s associates, built the kind of structure that took almost everything from the Governor when he was in the PDP, remains a mystery.
The PDP Renaissance Group which has a membership of the who is who in Cross River politics is seriously allied with Governor Wike.
The rally was attended by former Cross River governor, Liyel Imoke, Senator Sandy Onor and other chieftains of the party.
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