Kalita Aruku: Cross River 2015: Who is sincere to the North – PDP or APC?

By IAfrica
In Nigeria
Aug 17th, 2014
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When the governor of cross river state Sen. Liyel Imoke first made the pronouncement that his successor will come from the North it was with a pinch of salt that it was received within the political circles especially members of the PDP. Infact the level of distrust in the governors pronouncement has forced him to always emphasis that he his sincere about the zoning of the governorship ticket of PDP to the northern senatorial district at every political forum.

The reason for this distrust is not disconnected to the story of the “three “wise men”(Donald Duke, Liyel Imoke and Gershom Bassey) who met in Lagos to plan on how they will rule the state in turns in the next 24 years. Despite the denial by the alleged members of the cartel events in the past have given credence to this story. For instance, Donald Duke who was the first beneficiary of this (three wise men) arrangement after his eight years in power as governor has always insisted (as Liyel is insisting now) that power is going to the northern district of the state, Infact he was even specific to say he wants to hand over to his then deputy Elder Walter Eneji. Liyel on the other hand consistently denied his interest in the governorship seat (as Gershom is presently doing) only for him to come into the contest in the last minute and snatch the ticket as the only candidate from the Central Senatorial district while the North had more than four strong candidates in the race many of whom stepped down(e.g. Venatius Ikem and Fidelis Ugbo) and threw their weight behind Liyel Imoke.

Now this was the perceived plan, Liyel was consistently sent to the National either as minister or special adviser to be sufficiently equipped with large financial war chest and national connections, then on the home front the entire PDP structures in the south and central was under his firm control while couple with the fact that they were always willing tools in the north that will muster enough support for them. More than 5 candidates they sponsored from the north to divide sufficiently the votes of the north while that of the south and central was largely intact for Liyel and you didn’t need a sooth seer to tell you Liyel will coast home to victory.

The same scenario is playing out again which of course is the reason for the distrust especially among keen political followers. Gershom Bassey who is the man said to be expected to benefit from the final stage of three wise men agreement has in the last 16 years been chairman of water board reputed to be the most lucrative board in the state especially as its received high donations in hard currencies from many international donor organizations. He is also said to be enjoying a wonderful relationship with the big party wigs in Abuja including the presidency as he has even gone ahead to form and form a support group help drum support for the president’s 2015 ambition. On the home front the entire structure of the PDP in the south is said to be comfortably in the hands of Gershom. Infact, it is said that the entire councilors and chairmen in the south were all chosen at his recommendation. To further help hatch their plot the governor is said to presently pushing every Tom, Dick and Harry from the north to run for governor, this explains why as at the last count they are more than 25 governorship aspirants from the north. Although Gershom as expected is still denying his rumored interest close friends and associates have not.

The APC Cross river chapter has zoned its governorship ticket to the north in the spirit of fair play and justice. To this end the chairmanship position was given to the central senatorial district to stop them from aspiring while the substantive National position which turned out to be vice chairman south south was given to the southern senatorial district to settle them. The position of state secretary was also added to the south while the north was left with less lucrative position for the singular fact that they are taking governorship.

So fellow cross riverians and Nigerians help judge between APC and PDP sincere to the northern senatorial district of cross river state about the issue of them producing the next governor of cross river state.

Kalita Aruku

APC State Deputy youth leader

Cross river chapter.

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