Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River has officially defected from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Ayade defected to the APC on Thursday in Calabar at a ceremony at the Executive Chambers of the Governor’s Office.
He said his defection was to align the state with the ruling party at the centre for prosperous growth and development and to also join hands with President Muhammadu Buhari in building the nation.
“Buhari’s commitment to the development of the country is commendable. It is obvious at this point that we need to join hands with him to build a nation that we all can be proud of.
“As a team, we want to work with Mr President towards building a prosperous country that his succession process in 2023 will come without fear and hitches.
“If we as governors join hands with the President and agree on a way to govern this country, we will make progress.
“Having recognise the issue of our youths and unemployment, it is my responsibility as the leader of the party to do what I can to assist the President in the building process,” he said.
Ayade added, ”We need to position Cross River at the centre of activities and on that note, I declare Cross River as an APC state.”
Governor Mai Bala-Buni of Yobe, who is Caretaker Chairman of APC, welcomed Ayade into the party’s fold.
“As from today, Ayade is the leader of APC in Cross River,” he said.
The ceremony was attended by six APC governors- Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti State), Mohammed Badaru (Jigawa), Mai Bala-Buni (Yobe), Abubakar Bagudu (Kebbi State), Hope Uzodinma (Imo), and Simon Lalong (Plateau).