Cross River Governor Ben Ayade has invited all the presidential candidates of the political parties for the 2019 general elections to take a week-long vacation from campaigns and participate in the 2018 Calabar Carnival.

Ayade, extended the invitation to the presidential candidates on Sunday, while flagging off the third and last dry-run of the carnival, titled 'Africanism'.
 
Ayade, represented by his deputy, Professor Ivara Esu, noted that the event scheduled for December 28, had no political or religious undertone.

He said: “This is the final dry-run and the event is looking as if today is the grand finale. This shows that our first and second dry run was successful. I want to use this opportunity, on behalf of the state governor, to invite all the presidential candidates of various political parties to come for this year’s carnival.

"We want them to take off one week rest from their campaigns and come to enjoy themselves. Carnival Calabar does not know any political party or religion. When you come to Calabar for the carnival, you are as free as air.

 
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“I will like to invite them to come here and relax and as the people see them, maybe those who are able to dance better may attract more votes. So, we want to see the candidates who can come here and rock it better in such a way that some people may be encouraged to vote for them.”

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