Old politicians sweep PDP Cross River tickets
Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) primaries in Cross River State has produced an interesting scenario, as the old politicians have emerged, picking the party tickets for various elective positions, from the House of Assembly to the Senate.
Essien Ayi, who is aspiring to return to the House of Representatives for the sixth term, beat the new comers to pick the Calabar South/Akpabuyo/Bakassi Federal Constituency ticket.
Similarly, Eta Mbora picked the PDP ticket for Calabar/Odukpani Federal Constituency, while Eko Atu, another old-timer in PDP, emerged for Abi/Yakurr Federal Constituency.
Former commissioner for Justice and Attorney General of the state, Mr. Attah Ochinke, also picked the ticket for Ikom/Boki Federal Constituency, and will be a first timer if he wins.
Similarly, another PDP politician, Mr. Peter Akpanke, won the Obudu/Bekwara/Obanliku ticket in a rescheduled contest that took place in Calabar, after the first process was disrupted with violence that claimed the lives of a policeman and two others were injured.
For the Senatorial ticket, former state chairman of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) and former PDP state Chairman, Ntufam Okon, picked the PDP ticket for Cross River South Senatorial District.
Okon defeated his opponent, Dr. Joe Edet, having scored 186 votes with Dr. Edet scoring 47 votes. Dr. Edet, who lost to Okon congratulated the winner, describing his victory as a “win win” for the party and for the people, while also describing him as a senior brother and an old war horse in the business of politics, which he is still learning from.
On the other hand, Okon described the competition as being healthy for democracy. He noted: “PDP is determined to strengthen internal democracy and that internal democracy in the party is getting stronger.”
Similarly, a former House of Representatives member for Abi/Yakurr Federal constituency, Mr. Bassey Ewa, is to fly the PDP flag for Cross River Central Senatorial District. He beat Mr. Goddie Etta by 102 votes to 97.
The incumbent Senator for Cross River North Senatorial District, Mr. Agom Jarigbe, also won the PDP to contest in 2023. He emerged unopposed.
Commenting on this scenario, a Calabar based publisher, Mr. Charles Eniang said: “I believe that this is an attestation of the political prowess of the successful candidates and strategy by the party to reclaim the state.