Persons suspected to be political thugs in Obudu Local Government Area of Cross River State on Saturday attacked a governorship aspirant, Mr. Venatius Ikem, when he was declaring his intention to contest the 2019 election.
However, a ward chairman of the All Progressives Congress in Obudu LGA, who spoke under the condition of anonymity, said the attack was a combined move by supporters of the APC and Peoples Democratic Party.
Ikem, who declared to contest the governorship race under the platform of APC, was a former Commissioner for Works in the state during the administration of Governor Liyel Imoke.
He hails from Obudu LGA, where incumbent Governor Ben Ayade of the Peoples Democratic Party and another APC governorship aspirant, Mr. Paul Adah, are also from.
Ikem was attacked by political thugs at the APC secretariat in Obudu while declaring his intention.
He was said to have led his supporters on foot to the secretariat and while he was preparing to address them, a large group of thugs descended on the secretariat and beat up his loyalists.
A chapter chairman of APC in Abi LGA, Mr. Romanus Egbonyi, who sustained injury in his left arm, said it was unfair for the party, which is law abiding, to be treated badly.
“We came here to witness the formal declaration of Venatius Ikem and got attacked.
“Our party is one that would provide a level playing ground for all aspirants.
“If the powers that be in the state are confident of themselves, why do they have to descend so low to attack us physically in our own premises here in Obudu?” he queried.
The APC chairman who alleged that the attack was carried out by APC and PDP loyalists said, “Both APC and PDP combined forces to attack him.”