Secure Environment Central To Hitch Free Calabar Carnival – Security Experts

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Mr. Rekpene Bassey, Cross River State Security Adviser
Mr. Rekpene Bassey, Cross River State Security Adviser

In View of the dire security situation in parts of the country, security experts have emphasised the need for vigilance, conscious observation and collaboration with security agencies by operators of hotels and hospitality outfits In Calabar during the 32 day annual Festival.

Speaking at a talk shop organised for operators of hotels, restaurants, eateries and tour guides in Calabar on Thursday, Mr Rekpene Bassey, the State Security Adviser to Senator Liyel Imoke, the Cross River State governor said tourism is the mainstay of the economy of the state and has been nurtured with the limited resources of the state and as such everything would be done to sustain a conducive environment for the industry to thrive.

According to Rekpene Bassey, history is replete with security incidents which were planned and executed from hotel rooms and no area is immune to security braches and as such, the operators of hospitality outfits must ensure that “As managers of hotels and eatries in the state particularly in Calabar that is witnessing an influx of visitors for the Calabar Festival, you have a responsibility to ensure you sustain a secure and peaceful environment which the state is synonymous with ”.

He warned that any lapse or failure to report any suspicious movement by the hotel operators when observed would not only hurt them personally but also their businesses because nobody would want to patronize any hotel with a record of sore security incidents. “You should learn to ask questions and verify the information given to you by your quests not just focusing on taking money from them because one ugly incident can harm you and your business”.

He said timely reports to the police or any security agency would be able to safeguard any attempt to breach the security of the state since the security agencies have been adequately positioned to address any challenge or threat to security.

The Cross River State Police Commissioner, Mr Sola Sodipo said security breach can happen anywhere and therefore everyone has to be security conscious to make timnely report to the police or security agents close by. “People will always commit crime and as such there will always be crime but we have measures to stop one before it happens and even when one occurs, we have ways to apprehend the perpetrators of the offence and that is with the support of people like you”.

Mr Sodipo who was represented by CSP Nnanghe Itam, the head of Operations Unit of the Cross River State Police Command said the police has put in place measures that can contain any plan to breach the security of Calabar or any part of the state during the festival period through regular patrols, on the spot checks because “we know that every one that is coming for the festival has a motive, some to enjoy themselves, others for business but some may be coming with criminal intentions but we are up to the task”.

He called for extra vigilance on the part of the people of the state especially hotel owners and staff during the festival period and not to take anything for granted because it is in their best interest. “Nobody comes to a place and stays for six hours without looking for something to eat and if he is staying the night, he sleeps in a hotel that is the more reason you in the hospitality industry must collaborate with the police to have a successful Calabar Festival”.

In attendance at the talk shop were Nigeria Security and Civil Defense, State Security Service and police personnel.

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