By Joseph Kingston, Calabar
A cross section of Cross Rivers state citizens have expressed disappointment with what they saw as one-sided political appointment made so far by Gov Ben Ayade. They accuse him of favouring his people from the northern senatorial district against those in the central and southern senatorial districts.
Recall that the governor had, last week, announced the appointments of 20 aides. Out of the lot, 13were from Ayade’s northern senatorial zone, six are from the southern senatorial zone while only one was from the central district. His closest rivals in the last general election, Sen John OwanEnoh and Pastor UsaniUsani are from the central.
Speaking, a director in the state ministry of information and orientation, who did not want to be named, said people were already aware of the direction the government would go as indicated in the 20 aides announced.
“This is what we have been saying. The governor had flooded government with his people during his first tenure. In fact, there was ‘Obudunisation’ of governance as every office had an Obudu person as either the head or assistant. If you visit these offices, you would be surprised to discover that the people have substituted English language with Obudu language. What you hear them speak in government offices in Cross River state is Obudu language. English has been relegated.
“What do you call that? Is it not nepotism? We are busy blaming President Buhari for nepotism and we are doing the same here in the state. What is the difference?
“The way he is going again, we are afraid he would repeat the mistake of his first tenure and if care is not taken, nothing tangible would be seen in terms of infrastructural development because those siblings of his will not tell him how things are on ground,” he stated.
Also speaking, another respondent from the central senatorial district, who gave his name simply as Odok, said the development was worrisome and called on the governor to ensure equity and fair play in his appointments.
But speaking, the newly reappointed chief press secretary/special adviser to the governor on media, Mr Christian Ita, dismissed the insinuation, saying anyone who knew the governor well would know that he would not rob Peter to pay Paul in his appointment. He said that appointment of only 20 aides was too insignificant to judge the administration.