It was indeed a big blow for the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Akpabuyo local government area of Cross River State as hundreds of youths, on Friday, defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC) in order to work for the victory of Hon. Bassey Ekpo, the APC candidate for Akpabuyo State Constituency by-election slated for February 26, 2022.
The youths, numbering about 300, who defected in Eneyo Ward, said despite being in the PDP for several years, they had no sense of belonging as they were often alienated and sidelined whenever it comes to allocating social goods.
They said the candidacy of Hon. Bassey Ekpo was quite enticing, having known him to come from a background with remarkable pedigree, even as they expressed optimism that he would carry them along.
Meanwhile, the Hon. Bassey Ekpo campaign train made its presence felt in Eneyo, Ikot Eyo and Ikot Nakanda wards on Friday, having visited Idundu/Anyaghanse, Atimbo West/Effanga Offiong and Edem Odo/Edet Nsa wards on Thursday.
A major stakeholder, Sir Maurice Effiwatt, advised the people of Akpabuyo to ensure that the local government area continue to be socketed to the center by voting Hon. Bassey Ekpo, whom he described as a “talk and do politician”.
While assuring the people that APC would win massively in Nakanda ward, Sir Effiwatt declared that the election would be a litmus test for the acceptability of a prominent son of Nakanda, Arc. Bassey Ndem who is aspiring for the governorship of the state.
On her part, Princess Titi Ndifon, Vice Chairman of APC in southern senatorial district, pleaded with women to come out with their husbands and their children on the day of election to vote for APC, noting that Hon. Bassey Ekpo is a good man who has good intentions for the people of Akpabuyo.
Also speaking, the Council Chairman, Rt. Hon. Emmanuel Bassey, asked the people to get ready to deliver the candidate of the APC.
He urged people not to be afraid and turn out en masse at their respective polling units to vote, assuring them that the government has put adequate modalities in place to ensure the protection of lives and property.
The Campaign DG, Dr Genevieve Barnaby, described Bassey Ekpo as a humane and trustworthy person who will make good use of the mandate that would be given to him to serve, adding that he is physically, socially, morally, emotionally and psychologically stable and complete.
The Chairman, Media and Publicity Committee of the APC State House of Assembly By-election Campaign Team, Mr David Hakim, mandated youths of Akpabuyo to shun violence, and come out with their voters card and show their support for one of their own by joining hands to push the mandate of Hon. Bassey Ekpo so the youths can keep passing on the baton in this relay race.
In his brief remarks, Pastor Joshua Edet, Chairman of Eneyo ward, welcomed the campaign team and assured them that come 26 February, APC would prove its supremacy in Eneyo North and South.
He appealed to the party’s candidate to remember the people when he assumed office as member of the state house of assembly.
Giving a brief speech, the APC candidate, Hon. Bassey Ekpo thanked people of the wards for the support so far given to him.
He expressed hope they will consummate the support by turning out to vote for him on February 26.
At Ikot Eyo, the ward leader, Chief Bassey Okon, said when APC played the opposition in 2019, it put up stiff resistance to the PDP which was then the Party in power at the state level.
He said now that APC is the ruling party, the ward will deliver Hon. Bassey Ekpo with ease, and therefore called on residents to turn out massively on election day.
While welcoming the team in Ikot Nakanda Ward, the Councilor, Hon. Offiong Offiong Eyo, said the entire ward is APC and has been socketed to the center. He gave the assurance that the ward would deliver the APC candidate for the constituency by-election.
Some of the highlights of the campaign were the presentation of tricycles to ward chairmen in the wards so far visited.