By Patrick Obia
Dozens of aides, supporters and stalwarts of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) loyal to Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River State who had gathered at 11-11 roundabout in Calabar to protest the Supreme Court’s judgement on the ward and chapter congress of the party have dispersed.
The aborted protest was to show solidarity with Mr. Ayade as the judgement delivered by Justice Tijjani Abubakar is said to have dealt a blow to the Governor’s intention to control the PDP’s structure in Cross River.
But, after gathering for over two hours from 9:00AM, many began to disperse and the last set left at 11:28AM.
Decked mostly in white shirts upon black trousers, most of the aides could be heard telling supporters that they were awaiting further directives as the last message received was for them to gather and mobilize for the protest.
But, when over 80 percent of those who had converged departed, a former aide who turned up for the protests told CrossRiverWatch that; “They (Commissioners) said Oga (Mr. Ayade) said it should not go on because of a perceived backlash due to the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Two Commissioners who did not want their names in print had told our Newsroom earlier in the day via telephone that following the way the planning meeting ended, the protest will not hold.
CrossRiverWatch had reported that Commissioners met at the residence of Solid Minerals Commissioner, George O’ben-Etchi to plan the protest.
That meeting ended abruptly after a fight ensued between Sustainable Development Goals Commissioner, Oliver Orok and former Attorney General, Joe Oshie-Abang.
Mr. Orok whom a source said may have been tipsy then turned on Information Commissioner, Asu Okang whom had tried to intervene. Both engaged in another brawl.
Also, two female commissioners – Rita Ayim and Stella Odey-Inyang had another brawl on the side.
As at the time of filing this report, no one including journalists who had turned up to report the protest was left at the venue.
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