Senate leader Victor Ndoma-Egba has assured Nigerians that the controversial Bakassi Peninsula which was allegedly ceded to Cameroon some years ago still remains a part of Nigeria.
The Senator bared his mind on Saturday in Calabar while registering his condolence message upon the death of Thisday newspaper correspondent in Cross River State, Mr. Jude Okwe, at the Ernest Etim Press Center.
He said all hope was not lost in finding an amicable solution over the Bakassi issue, adding that the treaty which ceded Bakassi to Cameroon had not been domesticated.
According to the Senator, “that treaty Nigeria entered into has not been domesticated and, constitutionally, Bakassi remains a part of Nigeria.
“So, we are in a paradox because our own constitution which is the supreme document says Bakassi is in Nigeria but the reality is that Bakassi is no longer in Nigeria”, he posited.
While acknowledging the prerogative of the executive to enter into treaties, Ndoma-Egba however stated that any such decision cannot be binding on the nation until it is ratified by the National Assembly.
“We do not recognize that Bakassi has been ceded by not ratifying the treaty. That is essentially the position of
the National Assembly”, he maintained.
Ndoma-Egba, who represents the people of Cross River Central in the Upper Chamber, was later accompanied by journalists to the home of the deceased to console members of his family.
Earlier in his condolence message to late Jude Okwe, the Senate leader stated that he lived for values and stood on principles.
He promised to collaborate with members of the state council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) in order to give their departed colleague a befitting burial.
Meanwhile, the senator has restated his personal view about the exploration of solid mineral in Nigeria, arguing that every state should determine the exploration of its resources.
Ndoma-Egba said: “I believe solid mineral should be in the concurrent list. It should be the preserve of the federating units because every state in this country has one mineral resource or the other.”
He frowned at the continuous environmental and infrastructural degradation Cross River State suffers as a result of mining activities.
“The State Government is helpless because not a dime from the extensive quarry activities in Akamkpa is going to the State coffers”, he decried.
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