By Efa Sunday and David Nsa
Cross River Governor, Senator Ben Ayade has presented a cash prize of two million naira to members of the Cross River State Executives after defeating the House of Assembly members eight goals against four in today match to win the State Novelty cup.
The friendly match was played at the mini pitch of the U.J. Esuene stadium today Tuesday to herald the swearing-in of Governor-elect, Ben Ayade and his Deputy, Ivara Esu, slated to hold tomorrow Wednesday.
Meanwhile, the match ended full time goal-less draw, until 13-man penalty was awarded to both teams, which produced the 8:4 result.
According to the organizing Committee Chairman and Commissioner for Information, Mrs. Rosemary Archibong said, the match is “meant to signify the undying support of the Executives and the Legislator for the re-election of Governor Ben Ayade and his Deputy, and to also tell him thank you for giving us the opportunity to serve under his administration. Irrespective of the decision he (Ayade) will take after tomorrow in constituting his next cabinet, we are totally in support of him.’’
On his part, the lawmakers’ captain and outgoing Speaker of the Cross River State House of Assembly, Hon. John Gaul Lebo claimed that though his team lost, it was however, a show of cordiality between the two arms of Government in the State.
In his words, “Today marks the end of the tenure and dissolution of all elected members and appointees of Government, we are happy to end this way because this match has shown to Cross Riverians that we have no itch-strings between the two arms and we are perfectly in harmony. As we look forwards to better days ahead, we can only wish that greater achievements will await every one of us.”
Governor Ayade arrived the venue at exactly 9:25 am to conduct the ceremonial kick-off for the second half, after Prof. Ivara Esu had conducted the first half kick-off at 8:51am, and a cash price of two million naira to the winner and one million naira to the Assembly members.
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