VIDEO: Ayade Laments Persecution Of Governors, Accuse Journalists Of Destroying His Name

In Breaking News, Civic Space, CrossRiverWatch TV

By Jonathan Ugbal

Cross River Governor, Benedict Ayade has accused some journalists of deliberately destroying his name to ensure their business thrives which led to a wrong perception of him by the people.

Governor Ayade was fingered behind the travails of journalist and activist, Citizen Agba Jalingo after his Gestapo-styled arrest in 2019 led to 179 days of incarceration in Police and Prison custody as well as a three-year-long trial of treasonable felony, terrorism, and cybercrimes among others.

And, while speaking to Channels Television’s Terry Ikumi in an interview, the Governor subtly explained his relationship with Citizen Jalingo.

The broadcaster shared a clip of the interview on his Twitter handle and said it was aired on its Tuesday program, Political Paradigm.

“I asked Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River state about his regrets as he prepares to leave office, and he subtly responds to the reason behind journalist Agba Jalingo’s travails,” Ikumi tweeted.

The Governor, who denied any involvement in Citizen Jalingo’s travails and once retracted an accusation of blackmail against Citizen Jalingo, said; “The regret is this, the society is colored by the stories they read. They don’t see the heart of the person. They don’t see sincerity, they don’t see the goodness.

“If you don’t market yourself, if I don’t come… remember, I did not ask for this meeting. You are the people who called, ‘please you want to talk to me.’  I don’t do this. If I am not disciplined, see my purity of heart. Because the kind of questions you ask, which ordinarily are supposed to make me explain this point, which is the public perception.

“I get hurt because I see how sincere I am. I see how impossible it is to pay these salaries that I am expanding every day. And somebody is relying on the stories (of) somebody who has asked me for something two days ago… Let me tell you Governors go through a lot of persecution.

“A man calls you today and says ‘I need NGN 40 million’. I say I don’t have NGN 40 million, can you manage this NGN5 million? Two weeks later, he calls you, ‘I need a car’. The next week, these are people who call themselves journalists. And, the day you say no. The stories he writes about you (are) unbelievable.

“You call him and say, ‘how can you do this?’ And he says you know if I don’t write anything negative, nobody reads my stories. Each time I post something positive, nobody reads it. So, destroying your name is his business to be able to thrive and the poor innocent public takes that as a perception of the person.”

The Governor’s tenure elapses in 24 days, on May 29, 2023. His bid to return to the Senate where he was a member during the Seventh National Assembly failed after he lost the February 25th polls to Senator Jarigbe Agom of the People’s Democratic Party. However, he has taken the matter to the elections petition tribunal.

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