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Why I respect PDP – Gov Ayade



The Cross River State Governor, Ben Ayade, said on Thursday he has total respect for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) despite his switch to the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Ayade disclosed this to State House correspondent after he met with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

The meeting was the first between the President and the governor since he switched to the APC about two weeks ago.

He was led to President Buhari by Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari.

Ayade said he was a truthful and committed member of the PDP until he left the party.

He said the PDP provided him the platform to become a senator and governor, adding that he still has great respect for the main opposition party.

The governor, however, said he dumped the PDP because of President Buhari.

He said: “I am one of the strong Nigerian governors who have risen beyond party lines and ethnic lines by virtue of my education and exposure. My choice to join APC is generating a lot of concern for the PDP occasioned by the fact that it came as a rude shock.

READ ALSO: Cross River PDP alleges Ayade’s defection to APC will cost state N2bn

“And sincerely, it is indeed a rude shock because until I defected, I was a very strong member of the party in truth and in spirit. And the reality is that PDP had the best result in Cross River State.

“If you look at all the elected offices, the chairmen of council, all the counsellors, all the National Assembly members but one, all commissioners and the appointees, all of them were PDP before I defected.

“So, in terms of performance of PDP, it should be the highest performance in the last election in Cross River, which means of all the elected offices, except for one office, PDP cleared all.

“So, for such a governor who led PDP to such a victory, to defect to APC, definitely, it must come as a very, very rude shock.

“And I’m not here to discuss PDP, because I still have my respects or regards for that party. It’s a party that gave me an opportunity to be a senator. It’s a party that gave me every opportunity to be a governor.

“And so at all times, I have chosen to focus on APC and my dreams and reasons for my movement to APC.”

“I moved into the APC because of my personal relationship with Mr. President. I have watched him and I find honesty, integrity and I see his wish and commitment to the Federal Republic of Nigeria. To that extent, I have a leader that I trust.”

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