Special Adviser, Media and Publicity to Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River State, Christian Ita has cleared the air on the removal of party emblems from the Secretariat of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in the state, saying Ayade, who paid for the rent of the secretariat three months ago, had since decamped to the All Progressive Congress (APC).
Policemen, numbering over 50, had earlier on Saturday, cordoned off the PDP Secretariat, while some people removed all PDP emblems from the building and started painting it in green and white colours.
In a statement he endorsed late Saturday evening, disclosed that the secretariat “is a rented property, which is not owned by the PDP; rent renewed 3 months ago by Governor Ayade who has decamped to APC.”
“The attention of Cross River State government and the state chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has been drawn to a poorly scripted statement by the caretaker committee of the dead and now buried Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state.” The statement is nothing but a tissue of lies and a cocktail of fraudulent claims.
The puerile statement was an infantile attempt to mislead the public and whip up undeserved public sympathy. But Cobham and his gang failed woefully.
“First, the said property is a rented property, which is not owned by the PDP.
It will interest the public to know that the rent for the said property was only renewed three months ago by the same PDP that has now totally collapsed into the APC.
“The same former officials of the PDP who occupied the property when it was secretariat of the PDP are the persons still occupying it having switched allegiance and moved to the APC with the governor,” the statement read.
It added that “the claim by Cobham of forceful entry is fraudulent and criminal and should be ignored.”
“His claim that the PDP still has tenancy right over the property is pathetic. Pathetic because Cobham failed to realise that the same person who renewed the rent just three months ago has moved to the APC.
“If Barrister Cobham is not hiding behind a finger by claiming that the rent was paid by his party, let him name any member of the PDP as constituted today that either contributed or singlehandedly paid the rent,” the statement demanded.
The media aide to Governor Ayade said that rather than “fight over what does not belong to it, we will advise the shell-shocked and lame duck PDP to look elsewhere to situate their secretariat.”
Governor Ayade, it would be recalled, decamped from the PDP, under which umbrella he became a senator and two term governor of the state, to the APC on Thursday.
He had earlier on Wednesday held a state dinner for some APC governors, who were in the state to fine tune his eventual defection hours later.
Meanwhile, the immediate past governor of the state, Senator Liyle Imoke, has said that Ayade’s defection was not a surprise to the PDP in the state.
Imoke, who spoke as the leader of PDP stakeholders in Calabar on Saturday, noted that while the defection was regrettable, the party wished Ayade luck in his new political affiliation.
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