As Venatius Ikem emerges new chairman of PDP, Imoke, Cobham lambast Cross River Governor, Ayade

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By Akpan David, Calabar

Barrister Venatius Ikem, former national publicity secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, has been affirmed as new chairman of the party in Cross River State.

This follows a state-wide party Congress held in Calabar where delegates and party dignitaries from all the 18 LGA chapters who had converged on Saturday 18 September 2021 to form a new state party exco after expiration of tenure of the caretaker Committee led by former deputy governor, Efiok Cobham.

Chairman of the Congress Committee Oke Muo Aro commended delagates for the peaceful conduct of the exercise.

Aro who came in from PDP headquarters Abuja said the party is stronger without the Governor Ben Ayade who deserted the party about three months ago to APC.

The new chairman, Venatius Ikem said said he was humble by the election, adding that he would be a servant leader and that his doors will always remain open.

“I am just your humble servant leader and my doors will always remain open.

“There was a total consensus agreement by everyone and this congress fulfills it.

“This experience has taught me to rededicate my self to the organs of the party.

“I stand on the shoulders of Giants and there is no way I am going to fail.

“I hope to reinvigorate all the organs of the party from the ward level up to the highest level.

“I will also extend my hand of fellowship to all aggrieved members to come back, I also left but came back and elevated to the position of chairman Elect”, he said.

Speaking during the Congress, dignitaries said as 2023 election year approaches, they are going to face the monster they created in 2015.

Former governor, Liyel Imoke, his then deputy Efiok Cobham who midwifed the Congress that produced the new exco lambasted Gov Ayade for allegedly biting the finger that fed him.

Cobham said: “We created the monster when we brought a nobody in 2015 ahead of other better materials and taught him some of the tricks of election, and we installed him. Today, he has become a monster. He shouldn’t worry. We didn’t show him all the tricks, which reason we have re-strategised to launch those tricks we didn’t show him. Where was he in 1998 when we put this party together. Today he is challenging us as APC governor..”

Meanwhile, the Director-General of The Bridge Movement, Mr. Courageo Michaels has lauded the PDP for a rancour-free state congress which has resulted in the emergence of the newly elected Hon. Venatius Ikem led State Executive Commitee.
He extolled the transparency of the congress and advised other political parties to emulate the sterling example of the PDP in order to foster peace and unity.

He was confident that former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar will win the party’s 2023 presidential primaries as the Cross River Sttate congress is a pointer to what to expect at the forth-coming national congress and other elective processes of the party at all levels.

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