PDP Primary: Lawmaker Clinches Reps Ticket Sixth Time

The member representing the Akpabuyo/Bakassi/Calabar South Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, Apostle Essien Ayi, has clinched the ticket for the sixth time as the Peoples Democratic Party standard-bearer in next year’s election.


He got the ticket in the just concluded primary in Cross River State where he won by 57 votes to defeat Mrs. Imana Duke, who scored 23 votes, while Mr. Dominic Aqua got 16 votes and Mr. Steven Ekpe got three votes.


The Returning officer, Mr. Asuquo Ekpo, said 99 delegates voted in the election.


“By this tabulation, we declare that Hon. Essien Ayi is the winner of the Akpabuyo/Bakassi/Calabar South federal constituency primaries. He scored 57 votes while Mrs. Imana scored 23 votes and Dominic Aqua, 16 votes, then Steven Ekpo scored three votes,” he declared.


Ayi commended the process and said it was free and fair, adding, “I witnessed a very transparent process. I have not seen anybody protesting, it was very transparent and there was no foul play at all. As expected, I knew I was going to win because I know that the people are with me. I won squarely and I am thankful to God.”


On his expectations in the general election in 2023, he said, “like I said, I have the capacity to win the election on my own as a candidate. I cut across all other parties because I always reach out to people irrespective of whether you are in my party as far as you are in my constituency. I even reach out to people outside my constituency. I take delight in helping people because I treasure God’s blessings.”


The lawmaker assured the people of his constituency of a good and robust representation if he wins in 2023.


Imana Duke who trailed Ayi with 23 votes took her loss in good faith and said the process was a transparent exercise.


She said even though the exercise was transparent, the Nigerian voting system still had a long way to go in educating the voting public, adding that “the corruption no one talks about is “money paid to delegates.”


“It is indeed a transparent exercise, there is no challenge, the thing is that the Nigeria voting system has a long way to go. In as much as the exercise was transparent, you could see the delegates taking pictures in order to go and show their preferred aspirants who may likely not be the highest-paid because the corruption no one is talking about is the money that is paid to delegates. Money politics is the order of the day in Nigeria.




“Well for me, it is not a loss, it was my first time running for a political office and of course, I came second. I am not giving up, it is my entry into politics, I am here to stay,” she said.




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