By Archibong Jeremiah
The Cross River State Chapter Chairman of Nigerian Institute of Surveyors, CRS-NIS, Dr. Gertrude Nnanjar Njar, in this exclusive interview with CrossRiverWatch in Calabar throws her weight behind the postponement of the general election as she called on Cross Riverians to shun all manner of violence in the forth coming general election in the state and country at large.
What is your opinion about the postponement of the general election?
The Independent National Electoral Commissions (INEC) postponement of the earlier scheduled general elections was not biased because most Nigerians would have been disenfranchised if the election held at its earlier date. We are gradually gaining our lost territories; about 78% of PVCs have been collected which was far from this as at then, the Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC should ensure that Cross River State records a peaceful election with the fact that the commission, INEC is an umpire of truth as that is the rationale of its establishment.
What is your admonition about the forth coming election?
The forth coming election is one that credibility should be the hallmark with the will of the people respected and upheld as the rule of law depicts not otherwise. Anyone found violating or obstructing the process of ensuring that the election be free and fair should be punished not blessed as evidently done in the past and all these cannot be achieved if all hands are not on deck; my pain is that on that day most of the people you see around preaching peace, change, good news here and there will be the once really engaged in election irregularities.
Till date the plight of the displaced Bakassi people still lingers politically and otherwise, what is your counsel to the state government and all parties involved in resettling the people?
The federal and state government should stop politicizing the plight of the displaced people of Bakassi by ensuring that they are appropriately resettled as the camp they are in presently was meant to be temporal which has gone away from temporal to permanent, if it isnt temporal two years on they would have been properly settled, at least a good number of them if not all.
Soon the present administration of under the leadership of Senator Liyel Imoke will take a bow from the Peregrino House, what is your advice to his successor?
The incoming administration should keenly look into the basic issues bedeviling the state, it should provide essential amenities needed by Cross Riverians which includes power, good roads, water, education, health care, home grown Information and Communication Technologies, better orphanages and home for the elderly with regular stipend for our students and aged people among others. If we get the government to work we can achieve them, using the roads especially from Calabar to Ikom it makes you feel sorry for yourself and for the vehicle. It’s so bad, Ministry of Works both federal and state level needs to do road maintenance more often and evidently not on paper. We need more than 10 standard public tertiary institutions, creation of Ogoja state which will create more jobs and other related issues the next administration should fight for. Lest I forget, the Auto photo map done over 10 years ago by the state government needs to be updated, the federal government should be made to look into the plights of the displaced people of Bakassi; compensate them properly because tomorrow it could be Ikom or any other local government that shares boundaries with the Cameroons. We need as many airports as possible not just domestic but international as well.
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