By Ikechukwu Okaforadi
The crisis rocking the Cross River chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) was yesterday resolved by the Governor Mai Mala Buni led caretaker committee of the party, as the party leadership after meeting with the parties in the crisis announced at the party Secretariat that the party in the Cross River State is now under Matthew Mbu.
Fielding questions from journalists after the meeting at the party Secretariat, Secretary of the APC Caretaker Committee, Senator John Akpan Udoedehe, said all the parties to the dispute resolved to sheathe their swords and adopted Sen. Matthew Mbu as the new state chairman of the party.
Among those who attended the meeting were the Minister of State, Power, Goddy Jeddy Agba, former Senate Leader, Victor Ndoma-Egba, Sen. John Enoh, former Niger Delta Affairs minister, Usani Usani, immediate-past National Vice Chairman of the party for the South South, Hilliard Eta and the two former warring state chairmen, Ntufam John Etim and Sir John Ochala.
The caretaker committee Secretary, told journalists that President Muhammadu Buhari should be commended for his support to the reconciliation efforts of the party, adding “I was given a mandate by the Chairman of the Caretaker/ Extraordinary National Convention Planning Committee, Gov. Mai Mala Buni to resolve the lingering crisis in Cross River State. I am happy to announce to all of us that we have reached a consensus and we have finally achieved the peace in Cross River state.
“May I use this opportunity to thank Mr President and the NEC for giving us the opportunity to bring peace to the party”.
Minister of State for Power, Goddy Jeddy Agba, who is also a stakeholder in the conflict, said all the parties unanimously adopted Mbu as the new leader of the party in Cross River.
“I am glad to announce that today we have put an end to the crisis in Cross River. We have sat down and we have agreed and come to a unanimous conclusion that we have a new party chairman in the person of Senator Matthew Mbu (Jr) to henceforth lead us in Cross River APC.”
In acceptance speech, the new Cross River APC chairman said his emergence was divine, urging party leaders and members in the state to work towards winning all future elections.
“This has come from God. We are a family and we will surely move and work as one. Families do have disagreements. Families sometimes quarrel but families also reconcile and when they reconcile and walk as one, nothing can stop them. We are going to go back to Cross River State and work together. We all need each other and we will truly work together as a family and come all future elections, APC will win in Cross River State”, Mbu said.
One of the former factional state chairmen, Ntufam John Etim, expressed his support for the consensus arrangement which threw up Sen. Mbu.
He said; “Today, I stand by the consensus arrangement and support absolutely, by God’s grace the leadership of our beloved brother, Sen. Matthew Mbu Jr. I want to state that I will give him support in all ramifications, in all aspects and go ahead to assist in delivering APC in Cross River state.”
Another factional state chairman, Sir John Ochala also pledged his loyalty to the new leadership. He said; “We thank God that peace has finally come to the leadership of APC in the state.
“By the wisdom of the national leadership of our party and critical stakeholders from Cross River State, today a nomination has been made for a new state chairman of APC in Cross River in the person of Sen. M.T Mbu Jr. I subscribe absolutely to it and I pledge my unalloyed loyalty to the new leadership and we will give all our best to ensure that the forthcoming bye-elections of Senate and state Assembly will be the first testament of our resolve to work together.”