10th Assembly Speakership: Why APC Victory In Boki Should Be Treated As Defeat

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Ahead of the inauguration of the 10th Cross River State House of Assembly, Cross Riverians have pitched their tenth with different gladiators who are battling for the wig and gavel. Different commentators have advanced different arguments on why their preferred candidate deserves to be supported for the position to lead the house as Speaker.

One of such arguments has been that the party through members-Elect should decide the faith of the local government that should produce the next Speaker base on the outcome of the March 18 governorship election.

The two top contenders are Hon. Elvert Ayambem and Rt. Hon. Hillary Bisong from Ikom and Boki respectively. According to the results announced by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC PDP scored a total of 14,158 votes against APC’s 12,883 in the governorship election. PDP won with a slim margin of 1,275 votes. In Boki, PDP pulled 15,303 against APC’s 17,355. APC won with 2,052 votes.

Supporters of Mr. Bisong believe that since PDP won Ikom, Ayambem should be denied opportunity to lead the next legislative regime as Speaker. But they fail to compare APC’s formation in both local governments during the election to know which had better arsenal to not only win but do so convincingly. They’re running away from this because they probably know that if they do such analysis, it’ll be clear that even in defeat, APC did better in Ikom than Boki. In fact, Boki’s slim victory should be treated as defeat considering the juicy and important offices APC provided illustrious Boki indigenes going into the election.

APC went into the election with a lot of key positions in Boki; Secretary to the State Government, Director General of the APC Governorship Campaign Council, House of Reps Member-elect, etc.

Although seemingly apolitical, the Executive Secretary of EFCC and Vice Chancellor of the University of Calabar are also from Boki. These people owe APC a debt of support because leaders of the party were instrumental to their appointments. Beyond that, the Vice Chancellor is the biological mother of Mr. Bisong therefore, she had the moral obligation to work directly or indirectly for her son’s party.

In spite of all these, APC won in the local government with a paltry 2000 votes. In fact, it is rumoured that Hon. Bisong whom his supporters want to be rewarded for Boki’s slim victory lost his ward to PDP. In fact, impeccable sources said it took the maverick of reps member-elect, Hon. Victor Abang to give APC victory in Boki.

On the other hand, APC had no solid formation in Ikom. In fact, it was PDP that had that extra man in Ikom; a reps member yet, APC gave them a good fight and lost with a very slim margin. While Bisong is alleged to have lost his ward, Ayambem delivered his own.

The poor performance of APC in Boki despite the calibre of people holding sensitive positions in the local government, coupled with the fact that some of the most vocal supporters of Mr. Bisong are PDP members have raised some serious question on a possibility of sabotage.

Why would a State Executive member of PDP and some members of PDP’s Caterpillar Movement support Mr. Bisong the way they’re doing on social media? If they so much believe in him, why did they support Sen. Onor whose victory would have marked an end to Bisong’s ambition? Is their support a kind of realignment, payback or some sort of compensation? If the rumours that APC lost his (Bisong) ward is anything to go by, what role(s) did he play for that to happen or to have better results?

Well, as we continue to watch things unfold, we pray to have answers to the many unanswered questions. But for now, your guess is as good as mine.


Happy Easter Celebration!


Inyali Peter is a social commentator