State Correspondent

18 Local Government Chairmen of Cross River State have pledged their unalloyed loyalty to Governor Ben Ayade.

The pledge was made tuesday in Abuja when the Council Chairmen visited the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Prince Uche Secondus at the party’s national secretariat.

Speaking, the 18 council chairmen unanimously condemned the protracted party crisis in the state, blaming the levity of the National Working Committee in handling the issue, while averring that ‘Governor Ben Ayade remains the leader of the party and must be accorded deserved respect’.

The chairmen frowned at the ‘sacred cow’ privilege extended to some erring members of the party who were determined to ridicule the image of the party and her enviable record, while calling on the NWC to take punitive actions against rebellious elements particularly in Cross River.

“We have traveled all the way from Cross River State to tell you that Governor Ayade is the leader of our party in the state, like in other PDP states. We demand that he should be accorded his due honour in the affairs of the party. We are no longer comfortable with the approach of the NWC.

“Also, we continue to wonder why rebellious elements in the Party are not called to order particularly in Cross River State.

“We wish to state categorically that Sen. Prof. Ben has our loyalty 100% and whatever he says we should do is what we will do because he remains our leader. We are resolute about our stand with Ayade.

“In the interest of our party, we are urging the national leadership to wade into the issues in Cross River and ensure that they are nipped in the bud.

“The suspended PDP state congress should hold as soon as possible”, the chairmen stated in a petition.

Responding, the National Chairman of PDP, Prince Uche Secondus said the NWC was assiduously working to resolve lingering party issues in the state, adding that the position of His Excellency, Governor Ben Ayade, as the leader of the party was not contestable.

Secondus, who was represented by the party’s Deputy National Secretary, Dr. Emmanuel Agbo further said that PDP state congress would be conducted soon in Cross River.

The Chairman of Cross River State Council Chairmen Forum, Hon. Emmanuel Bassey, his Obudu council counterpart, Hon. Bonny Eraye and the Chairman of Biase local government council, Hon, Mrs Ada Charles spoke on behalf of the 18 council chairmen of Cross River State.

The chairmen were accompanied by the State’s Director-General for Due Process & Price Intelligence, Barr. Alphosus Eba Ogar.

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