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Ex-minister, 10 others jostle for Cross River’s governorship seat

Mr Usani Usani, a former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, is among the 11 candidates jostling to take over the governorship seat of Cross River from the incumbent, Prof. Ben Ayade.

[FILE] Cross River

Mr Usani Usani, a former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, is among the 11 candidates jostling to take over the governorship seat of Cross River from the incumbent, Prof. Ben Ayade.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that according to a document displayed at the state office of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), 11 political parties are vying for the state’s governorship seat.

Usani, who was a minister between 2015 and 2019, would pursue his governorship ambition under the Peoples Redemption Party (PRP).

The other candidates include Mr. Bassey Otu of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Sen. Sandy Onor of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Other political parties that fielded candidates for the seat are Labour Party (LP), the All Peoples Party (APP), Young Progressive Party (YPP), National Rescue Movement (NRM), and Social Democratic Party (SDP).

African Democratic Congresses (ADC), Allied Peoples Movement (APM), and Action Alliance (AA) also fielded candidates also seeking to succeed Ayade in 2023.

Usani had in May dumped the APC for the PRP to enable him to realise his governorship ambition.

He had left the APC over their consensus arrangement for the governorship ticket which had 17 aspirants jostling for the ticket.

Usani was one of the pioneer members of the APC in the state and was appointed by President General Muhammadu Buhari as Niger Delta Affairs Minister in November 2015.

Usani had contested for the governorship seat in the state three times – in 2003, 2011, and 2019.