Claim: The APC Women Leader, Dr Betta Edu, in a recent interview, claims that the Labour Party has no governorship candidate in Cross River State. She added that her party had won all House Representatives seats in the state except in the Northern Senatorial District.
Verdict: Misleading. The Labour Party’s governorship candidate in the election is Mr Ogar Osim. Also, the APC failed to win the Calabar Municipality/Odukpani seat. Bassey Akiba of the Labour Party won it.
In a recent interview on Arise TV, a former commissioner of health in Cross River state and the current National Women Leader of the ruling All Progressive Congress, APC made various claims regarding the recent elections. Speaking about the national parliamentary elections, Ms Edu said:
“I want to put this to the fore that APC won the House of Representative seats except that of the Northern part of the state. So, APC won in the central, APC won in the south, and we only lost in the Northern part of the state.”
On the state governorship elections, she said:
“The Labour Party won [the presidential election in the state], APC came close second, and then PDP came far third. Going into the next election, Labour Party doesn’t have a candidate.” Ms Betta added, “for PDP, we are not worried about them. They are not a threat to us. We are discussing with them and working hand in hand with them because they do not even have a governorship candidate. They will work with us in APC.”
In verifying the claim that the APC swept all the House of Representatives seats in the central and southern part of the state, DUBAWA looked through the list of members-elect of the House of Representatives shared by the Independent National Electoral Commission.
On the list published by INEC, of the eight seats, PDP won the two available slots in the Northern Senatorial District. APC won all three available seats in the Central Senatorial District, while the APC took two seats and LP one seat in the Southern Senatorial District.
Under the column for Cross River State and number 81 on the overall list, Akiba Bassey Ekpenyong of the Labour Party is listed as the winner of the Calabar Municipality/Odukpani Federal Representative Seat.
Does the Labour Party have a Governorship Candidate in Cross River?
While INEC has yet to upload a comprehensive list of governorship candidates, information from credible media houses such as Vanguard and Daily Post show that Mr Ogar Osim is the Labour Party’s candidate for the governorship seat in the State alongside Ekpezu Obu as his running mate.
Following claims made by the APC in Cross River that the party was working hand-in-glove with the Labour Party, the State Publicity Secretary of the Labour Party, Dr Lekan Ofem, denied the existence of such arrangement, insisting that the party “has a Governorship Candidate in the person of Patriarch Ogar Osim who is in the race to victory.”
Claims by Ms Edu that the APC had won all the available House of Representatives seats in the Central and Southern part of Cross River State in last month’s elections are misleading, as the party lost the Calabar Municipality/Odukpani seat to Bassey Akiba of LP.
Also, the claim that the Labour Party has no governorship candidate in this Saturday’s polls is false, as Mr Osim is flying the LP’s flag in the elections.
The researcher produced this fact-check per the DUBAWA 2023 Kwame KariKari Fellowship, in partnership with CrossRiverWatch, to facilitate the ethos of “truth” in journalism and enhance media literacy in the country.