ACCEPTANCE SPEECH BY THE GOVERNOR-ELECT OF CROSS RIVER STATE, BASSEY EDET OTU

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Fellow Cross Riverians, this is the day we have waited for, prayed for and hoped for. It is the day that demonstrates, in a most profound way, the strength of our democracy and our people’s collective resolve to continue our peaceful march into a new era of growth and economic prosperity. 

Brothers and sisters, | dedicate this victory to God Almighty, who in His Infinite wisdom has given us this day. This victory has once again proven God’s immense presence in the affairs of Cross River State. There is not a shadow of doubt about that! The glory belongs to Him.

Next, my gratitude goes to our dear Governor, His Excellency, Prof Ben Ayade.

In developing countries experience has shown that the struggle for power is not often a contest of ideas but a battle between right and wrong and justice and injustice ‘Your Excellency, you stood your ground and ensured that the delicate balance that holds our beloved state in place did not trip and tumble. This singular act has set you apart as a man of deep convictions and passionate moral force. You have etched your name in history, Thank you so much.

I bow in humility to the leadership and members of our great party (the APC) who worked night and day to give us victory. You went from door to door and from one market square to another to wake our brothers and sisters up to the incredible possibilities of a new Cross River State. This victory is a product of your commitment.

I am infinitely grateful to the leaders of the church and the traditional institutions, student bodies and the youths, the market women and professional associations, the non-indigenes, the town unions and everyday people of Cross River state from the peaks of Obanliku hills to the lowlands of Bakassi! You came together to make this history. This Dream is your dream!

Finally, | must thank my dear wife, my family and close frends who had to live with my long absences during the campaigns and who shared my anxieties when the votes were counted. You have the best of my loving always!

Fellow Cross Riverians, the victory we celebrate today is not a winner takes-all. It’s not the victory of one political interest over another or the victory of one cultural zone over others, but the victory of our brotherhood over the dark forces that seek to polarize us into camps. It is the victory of our humanity over poisonous rhetoric.

Once again, we have demonstrated that the ties that bind us are stronger than the artificial gulfs they tried to create between us for selfish purposes.

This mandate is the people’s mandate. It is a reaffirmation that as a people, we have a keen sense of justice. And when the chips are down, we sacrifice our differences to reaffirm our sense of justice. I am touched by this act of greatness and I will not let you down. I will work night and day to justify the confidence you have reposed in me.

Fellow Cross Riverians, there are no winners and losers, no victor and no vanquished. What we have is the victory of democracy. So, I| reach out a hand of fellowship to my brothers who ran for this position against me from other political parties. I urge you all to join hands with me, let us build a new Cross River State. This state belongs to only one party; and that is the people of Cross River State. We share the same obligation to work for its welfare and progress.

My Team and I will settle down quickly to build bridges and mend broken fences to ensure that the bitterness that erupted during the campaigns are washed away by our collective tears of victory. We shall roll-up our shirt sleeves to ensure that everyone is given a sense of belonging in the coming dispensation and that together we shall force down the rainfail of greatness on our beloved state.

My brothers and sisters, this is a great time to be a Cross Riverian. Our hard-working governor has fastidiously implemented a wonderful bluepnnt for our economic greatness. In so doing, he has made our work easy for us. We shall breathe a new life into all the industries he has built and harness their potentials to create more jobs and economic prosperity for our dear state.

I pledge to run a compassionate administration, a listening government, in which all blades of ideas shall be given a fair hearing and chance at success. We shall be fair to all but we shall insist on the minimum standards of decency in our interface with the people.

My government will have no place for ethnic champions who interpret life from the narrow prism of their tribal worldviews. We shall run an equitable, firm and compassionate government that will work for Cross River State.

Our policies and programmes shall touch the people where it matters the most. I reckon that it is the only way to justify your faith in me.

Fellow Cross Riverians, this is our brightest chance ever. We are at the threshold of a new beginning. We have a chance to re-imagine our dear state and re-invent Cross River into the paradise of our dreams.

Come with me into a New Dawn!

God bless Cross Rwver State.

God Bless Nigeria.

Thank you.