Governor Benedict Ayade


Governor Liyel ImokeBenedict Ayade is a Nigerian politician who was elected Governor for Cross River in 9 April 2015 national elections, running on the People's Democratic Party (PDP) platform.

Benedict Bengioushuye Ayade was born on 2 March 1969. He studied at the University of Ibadan, Ambrose Alli University in Ekpoma and Delta State University, Abraka, becoming a Lecturer. An environmental consultant, he was appointed Chairman of the Ecological fund, Chairman of the International Institute of Environmental Research and a member of SPAC. He worked on Groundwater Remediation in Nigeria, and invented a sewage treatment plant based on solar energy. He won an award from the government of Japan for outstanding research into Global warming in Africa. He became a member of the Nigeria Association of Petroleum Engineers and the Cross River State Poverty Alleviation Board.

Ben Ayade became a PDP chieftain in Cross River State, and was a member of the Strategy Committee in the government of Senator Liyel Imoke, whose election as governor was nullified in 2008.[3]

In the January 2011 PDP primary elections, Ayade was reported to have defeated Senator Gregory Ngaji to become the candidate for the Cross River North Senatorial seat.[4] In fact, his opponent was incumbent member of the House of Representatives Paul Adah, whom he defeated by 626 against 211 votes.[5] Ngaji did not compete in the primaries, and said he supported Ayade.[6]

There was an allegation that Ayade donated N20 million to the campaign Fund of Cross River governor, Liyel Imoke, in violation of the Electoral Act. In response to the allegation, in February 2011 a Federal High Court justice in Calabar granted an order of interim injunction restraining Ayade from presenting himself as a candidate and barring the INEC from accepting Ayade as a candidate of any party.[8] Eventually, both allegations were found to be untrue and the case was thrown out in court.[citation needed]

Ayade was popular with young voters. He had been criticised for coming off as arrogant—something tied to his wealth and academic background.[10] A report before the election noted that he had no serious competitors in the race. In 9 April 2011 elections, Ayade gained 91,123 votes. His closest rival was Patrick Agbe of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), who received 11,056 votes. Benedict Ayade was appointed Vice-Chairman of the Senate committee on Environment and Ecology. He is also a member of the Senate Committees on Education, Marine Transport, Petroleum Downstream, and Drugs/Narcotics/Crime.

Prof. Ben Ayade has been declared the winner of the governorship election in Cross River State, having polled 342,016 votes, ahead of the All Progressives Congress candidate in the state, Odey Ochicha, with votes totalling 53,983.




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