By Aplefe Ojong
Even with the postponement of the general elections which would have been days away, thick, dark and ominous clouds are still gathering against the House of Representatives return ambition of Hon. Bassey Ewa, representing the Abi/Yakurr Federal Constituency of Cross River State at the lower chambers.
Recent events and political developments in the Constituency indicate that all is not well with the ambition of the young Ekori born politician’s desire to return to the lower House come 29 May this year.
Competent sources close to the power brokers and political god-fathers of Yakurr politics disclosed to CrossRiverWatch that Hon. Ewa has completely lost favor with a large section of his constituency, and Yakurr where he comes from in particular, and that his being foisted on the people during the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) primaries by the Governor, Senator Liyel Imoke, with the high hopes of winning the general elections is like trying to push the proverbial camel’s head through a needle’s eye.
According to our source, an Elder and political leader in Yakurr, as part of the grand plan by the Elders and people of Yakurr nation in particular to ensure they stop Hon. Ewa from returning, they have closed ranks and buried their political differences to make sure that Hon. Ewa does not win next month’s election.
The source said “the elders felt betrayed that Hon. Ewa who has been so favored politically over the rest of other Yakurr sons and daughters, spent eight years in the Cross River House of Assembly and another eight in the House of Representatives, but has treated them with disdain and all the people have closed ranks and buried their political differences to make sure that Hon. Ewa does not return to the lower House.”
CrossRiverWatch further gathered that it is based on this reality that a meeting of Yakurr elders comprising the former Governor, Chief Clement Ebri, Chief Wilfred Inah who contested and lost the governorship primaries to Chief Ebri, a former Commissioner in the state, Mr. Usani Usani, a former member of the House of Reps, Chief Obeten Okorn Obeten and many other Yakurr elders and elites converged at Ugep on Sunday, February 8, 2015 to form a common front and tell Governor Imoke that he can no longer continue to impose candidates on them.
At the Sunday meeting, former governor Clement Ebri was quoted by calitown.com as saying: “I think it is out of place for the governor to insist that, he, an individual is wiser than all of us and can go ahead and impose a candidate on us. We must emphatically reject a candidate that is imposed on us. Yakurr must have a say on how our representatives emerge. This deliberate policy of containment must come to an end. With the number of votes Yakurr has, those who over the years have worked to make Yakurr a political fishing pot must be given a lesson with our votes. We have over 78,000 eligible votes in Yakurr and that is not a joke.”
Mr. Wilfred Inah who was also at the meeting was quoted as saying: “I sent Liyel Imoke three text messages and also wrote him a two and a half page letter on this matter telling him that the greater Yakurr nation insists that her representatives must be chosen by the people and not him the governor. He may have turned a deaf ear to what we are saying but we as a people must go ahead and prove with our votes that the people indeed matter. The political instability in Yakurr has benefited Imoke’s acolytes, now with one voice and block votes, the people will take their destiny in their hands.”
Former Rep. Obeten Obeten who also attended the event wondered: “If Yakurr has occupied the House of Reps. position for 16years, should Abi also not have an opportunity at that position too?”
Various speakers at the occasion berated the incumbent rep. and promised to go to the crevices of the constituency with the message of their elders.
Several attempts by CrossRiverWatch to get Hon. Bassey Ewa’s reaction were unsuccessful as several calls to his telephone since Sunday were not taken.