What Ayade Told Critics Of Bakassi Deep Seaport Project

In Breaking News, Business & Economy, International News

By Jonathan Ugbal: Government House Correspondent

Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River has said that his administration’s decision to embark on the construction of fans Bakassi deep seaport, one of the signature projects of his administration was premised on the fact that it was the only viable alternative to reconstructing the State’s economy.

Mr. Ayade has been criticised for his insistence on the seaport and superhighway projects, both valued at over NGN1 trillion and on Wednesday, during a parley with journalists in his office, he explained that due to the State’s huge debt burden, it was barred from accessing new loans hence the need to stimulate the economy via the construction of a facility that has kept the State with the highest income afloat for years.

“For a Cross River that I met adrift in pain; huge salary burden, huge debt burden – domestic and foreign debt burden, absolute delisting from States that can get bank loans. Cross River, Zamfara and Osun States cannot get commercial loans because we were already at a crucial limit before I came into government.

“The Debt Management Office said sorry you cannot take any more loans; this does not mean that we were provided any extra income; that is where I started from.

“I knew that I need to change the story, I need to refocus. What do I do? I need to create a brand new income, what is the strength of the State with the biggest income? Lagos, it is the seaport; take away the seaport from Lagos – that factory is located close to Ogun State or Lagos because of the seaport for ease of raw materials, for export,” Ayade said and explained why a new port was better than financing the existing port.

He averred that: “If you have the seaport, the seaport itself creates almost 35,000 jobs. So why can’t Cross River have a seaport? Oh we already have a federal port. So why can’t you just dredge that port? That port has already been concessioned out and federal government has not met the obligation of the concession and the concession was skewed in such a way that the concession is deemed to become effective from when federal government does the dredging of the canal; a canal of 97 kilometer, from an average depth of two to three meters draft to be dredged to nine and ten meters.”

Continuing, Ayade said: “federal government is failing and the concessionaire is saying sorry, even though I have been here in this port for almost 50 years plus, I am not going to pay and my deals are not active until federal government meets her obligation.

“So the port becomes literally dysfunctional and only allows flat bottom vessels to come in. The maximum you can carry there is about 6,000 metric tons of petroleum products.

“This limits it, it has a technical bottleneck, it has a split personality because it is disjointed in terms of ownership. The concessionaire views it as his property until federal government meets its obligation.”

Furthermore, he explained that: “The use of the existing Calabar port; we don’t have the financial wherewithal to do the dredging which is supposed to be a federal government project which was already awarded to (Niger) global dredging by the previous administration and stagnated by this administration which is an issue of litigation which is in Court. Therefore, that too has its own bottleneck. So, either way, I find myself in a macabre dance.”

Since You Are Here, Support Good Journalism


CrossRiverWatch was founded on the ideals of deploying tech tools to report in an ethical manner, news, views and analysis with a narrative that ensures transparency in governance, a good society and an accountable democracy.

Everyone appreciates good journalism but it costs a lot of money. Nonetheless, it cannot be sacrificed on the altar of news commercialisation.

Consider making a modest contribution to support CrossRiverWatch's journalism of credibility and integrity in order to ensure that all have continuous free access to our noble endeavor.

CLICK HERE

New Feature: Don't miss any of our news again.Get all our articles in your facebook chat box.Click the Facebook Messenger Icon below to subscribe now

Text Advert by CRWatch :Place Yours

Will You To Learn How To Make Millions Of Naira Making Special Creams From Your Kitchen?.Click Here


Expose Your Business And Make More Sales. Advertise On CrossRiverWatch.com Today

You may also read!

Governor Ayade And The Peril Of Ad-hoc Populism… BY AGBA JALINGO

Populism in its most basic definition is simply a political approach that strives to appeal to ordinary people who

Read More...

Policy Alert Holds 2-Day Workshop For Non-State Actors On Open Government Partnership In Calabar

By Ogar Monday and Mary Bassey Cross River State has been lauded for making lots of progress on financial

Read More...

Jarigbe Congratulates Ayade On Court Judgement But Says ‘Voice Of The People Is The Voice Of God’

By Patrick Obia The Senator representing Cross River Northern senatorial district in the senate, Sen. Jarigbe Agom has congratulated

Read More...

Leave a reply:

Your email address will not be published.

Mobile Sliding Menu

Share this now