7th March, 2011
Some key officials of the 25-member ruling PDP state assembly in Cross River, have defected to the ACN, investigations by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Calabar has shown.
They are the Chief Whip of the State Assembly, Mkpanam Ekpo, (Biase) Esther Ayonobi, (Yakurr).
Others are Orok Duke, former Deputy Speaker and Majority Leader of the Assembly, (Calabar South), and the Chairman House Committee on Information Jerry Agba.
Duke and Agba defected to the ACN as candidates of the party for the House of Assembly polls in their respective constituencies
The PDP in the state is facing challenges with many of its founding members having earlier defected to ACN and other opposition parties.
This is in spite of the reconciliation committee set up by the party to bring back aggrieved members after the controversial primaries.
Meanwhile, the Cross River House of Assembly has appointed Itaya Nyong (Akamkpa) as the new Chief Whip. He will be in that position until May 29,
He takes over from Mkpanam Ekpo, who has defected to the ACN
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that the governorship candidate of ACN Sen. Mathew Mbu (Jnr) and his Deputy, Elder Okon Bassey were founding members of PDP in the state
Also, the three Senatorial candidates of the ACN in the state participated in the controversial PDP primaries before defecting to the ACN as their flag bearers.
They included Sen. Musa Adede (Cross River North), Sir Patrick Iwara,(Cross River Central), and Prof. Etim Nyong (Cross River South).