By Nsan Ndoma-Neji, Calabar

The leadership of the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, PFN, in Cross River State, yesterday advanced reasons behind the endorsement of the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Senator Sandy Onor, as its preferred candidate in the March 11 gubernatorial election, saying that Onor was chosen based on the outcome of an opinion poll which the Christian body conducted, where Onor emerged tops.

Chairman of Cross River State PFN, Dr. Lawrence Ekwork, stated this while reading out result of the PFN Strategy Committee, which conducted the poll to journalists in a media parley that took place at the Assemblies of God Church, Diamond Hill, Calabar, on Monday.

The PFN chairman stated that in their quest to find who should be at the helms of affairs in Cross River State from May 29, 2023, they conducted an pinion poll, through the Strategy Committee of the PFN, and the PDP candidate emerged as winner.

Among the criteria used by the PFN Strategic Committee are: capacity of the candidates of the All Prohressives Congress, APC; PDP; People’s Redemption Party, PRP; and the candidates’ ability to convince the committee that they possess robust capacity to tackle the numerous socio-economic challenges faced by the state; the programmes of the various candidates; and several others issues, incidentally the PDP candidate was able to convince the committee of his capacity to lead, if given the privilege.

Ekwork stated that 11 out of the 12 members of the Strategy Committee, drawn from the State Advisory Council, SAC, with one representative each from the women and youth wings voted in favour of Senator Onor.

The state PFN chairman averred that the Strategy Committee was mandated to interview, interact and interogate the four governorship candidates, bordering on character, capacity, policies and candidate’s manifestoes, with a view to chosing the best among the candidates.

Ekwork said, “A total of 429 leaders at the local government level voted through the secret ballot system, and the PDP candidate scored 260 votes, APC candidate had 114 votes, whereas PRP scored 47 votes and eight votes were voided.”

He stressed that in order to factor the input of PFN leaders at the local government level, the body summoned three meetings at the different senatorial headquarters, where local government chapters officials within those districts gathered, including the local government coordinators and voted through secret ballotting to chose the candidate who would serve the state interest best, again Onor came first.

Reacting to the issue, a former state chairman of the PFN, who is now the National Publicity Secretary, of the PFN, Bishop Dr Gospel Emmah Isong, denied having knowledge of that decision by the PFN to endorse Senator Onor as the adopted candidate.

Isong, who is also the General Overseer, Christian Central Chapel International, CCCI, stated that he was neither consulted nor asked to make an input regarding the endorsement of the PDP governorship candidate in Saturday’s gubernatorial election.

The PFN National Publicity Secretary advised the body of Christ to thread with caution so as not to drag the body of christ into partisan politics.

Late Mrs Josephine Alo Inuyashi Burial


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