By Jonathan Ugbal, Government House Correspondent
Cross River governor, Senator Ben Ayade says he is a member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who simply has a good working relationship with President Muhammadu Buhari for the good of the people of his state.
Ayade who stated this recently while fielding questions from newsmen at the Margaret Ekpo International Airport Calabar, reasoned that good governance should be the next step after elections.
“We did not seek office for the mere sake of politics, politics is for service to your people, it is not politics for the sake of politics, and so for me, I am focused on ensuring that I work with the President (Muhammadu Buhari) for the good of my people in Cross River State” Ayade said.
He disclosed that his relationship with President Buhari is based on the latter’s character, person and integrity, pointing out that these qualities have tremendously endeared him to believing that “if I share my feelings with him, he won’t look at me as a southern governor or PDP governor and he has shown that in all ways.”
The governor who frowned on what he termed “cannibalistic style of politics where everything is seen from the perspective of the next elections,” rhetorically asked: “how can a country spend its time running election and copying a democracy that is not consistent with our habits as a people?”.
Ayade averred that in his bid to construct a new economy for Cross River through the signature projects, there is need for a good relationship with President Buhari at all stages, adding that, “he (Buhari) did not seek election to be APC president, he sought to be the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and that is who he is and what he has continued to exhibit.”
The governor said: “People will imagine that I should be fighting the President, people will imagine that as a PDP governor, how am I going to meet with the President and when I get such conversations, I feel pained because the whole nation now revolves around the fulcrum of politics.”
The governor said despite having a good relationship with the President, he remains a strong member of the PDP. His words: “I am a PDP governor in all my spirit. I am a strong member of the party and I believe in the party.”
The governor commended Cross Riverians for being supportive of his relationship with Buhari which he reciprocated with his first state visit to the state for the ground breaking ceremony of the superhighway,” noting: “I think it is only natural for us to show him this level of respect by going to him for consultation, giving him progress report and all the support he needs as a President to succeed.”