By Patrick Obia
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The former Governor of Cross River State, Sen. Liyel Imoke has said the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the State will challenge the recent judgment of the Federal High Court in Abuja at the supreme court.
The Federal High Court in Abuja had on Thursday, April 7th, 2022 dismissed a suit seeking to declare vacant the seat of Cross River State Governor, Sen. Ben Ayade following his decamping to the All Progressives Congress (APC).
“I think this goes beyond just the law and the issue of defection as it relates to our democracy. It is something we hope will ultimately be addressed by the constitution of the supreme court.
According to him, “It will be unfortunate if we have continuous undecided matters of this nature going on while our democracy is still at birth. It is something I believe we should not take for granted and of course, I don’t think the PDP or any other party for that matter will be satisfied with this particular judgment and I’m informed that the party will appeal the judgment; ultimately the Supreme Court will decide whether it is morally right or wrong to defect to another party or it just goes beyond the interpretation of the law. I’m sure the constitution may not have anticipated the issue of defection that is why it has not been addressed in the constitution.”
Imoke speaking on Arise News TV also said he is an advocate of zoning and power rotation for the sake of equity and justice.
His words: “The issue of zoning and rotation are included in our constitution for a particular reason, and clearly we must always emphasize justice and equity in all we do as a nation. To some extent, we have some of that in the Federal character principle in the constitution even though zoning is not provided in the constitution. It is an instrument that provides for inclusiveness.
“The constitution of the party has not been amended and I believe zoning and rotation will remain within the PDP constitution and will remain an issue that we will rely on from time to time moving forward. That is why I believe that zoning and rotation are basically to engender equity, collectiveness and of course, everyone can have a sense of belonging as far as we are concerned,” he posited.
Speaking on what went wrong between him and his successor, Governor Ben Ayade that led to his defection, Imoke disclosed their political relationship got sour the day Ayade dumped the PDP.
The former Governor noted that Ben’s mind was made up to defect, not because he lost control of the party; admitting that the party in the State had its internal crisis.
“I worked with Governor Ayade in his first term elections, worked with him when he was elected in his second term election. Governor Ayade in all honesty and I have no political differences until the date of his defection and we did not work at oppositions at any point until his defection. Yes, there were issues in the party with regards to the structure of the party and those issues have not been decided, the structures have not been taken away from the Governor and I don’t believe that as he said his reason for defecting is not because he lost control of the party. I think Governor Ayade has been very clear as to the reason he defected.”
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