By CrossRiverWatch Admin
Amidst the ongoing communal war between Governor Ben Ayade’s LGA, Obudu and Vandeikya LGA of Benue State, the Cross River state governor has again, travelled out of the country.
This is the second time the governor is leaving the country since his second term oath of office, 43 days ago. Reliable sources informed CrossRiverWatch that he is off to Germany.
Just 48 hours after his inauguration on May 29, the governor left for Oslo in Norway where he was spotted at the NIMASA stand at a maritime trade fair in Norway.
Ayade cut his journey in Norway short after media reports castigated him for being in Oslo when all his other 35 colleague governors were having a crucial security parley with President Buhari and Security Chiefs in Abuja. He also missed the funeral service of the late wife of a former Director General of the DSS, Ita Ekpenyong, in Calabar where the governor’s representative was booed in church.
Opposition party, the African Action Congress AAC, in Cross River state also berated the governor for his incessant travels and urged him to stop travelling without telling his employers.
The AAC argued that since the governor is always travelling with public money, he must make public his itirinary by telling the people of Cross River how much tax payers money his travel is costing the State, what he is travelling to do, who is going with him, how long he will be staying and when he should be expected back in the State, to ensure Cross Riverians get value for their money.
Regardless, the governor left Calabar on Friday last week, arrived Abuja amidst controversy and then zooms out of the country with a directive to his aides to keep the journey under wraps.
CrossRiverWatch attempt to get details of the governor’s travel from his spokespersons were not successful as the Chief Press Secretary, Christian Ita did not pick or return calls to his phone. The Deputy Chief Press Secretary, Linus Obogo denied knowing the whereabouts of the governor.
Further effort by our reporter to find out how much tax payers money the governor’s latest travel will cost the State, were also met with stiff resistance by staff at the State Accountant General’s office. A female staff at the AG’s office rebuffed our reporter telling him the cost of the governor’s trip “is none of your business.”
But a member of the governor’s protocol team who pleaded not to be named for fear of repercussion, expressed delight that the media is beaming light on the governor’s travels and was hopeful that the search light will change some anomalies.
Our source who said the governor’s latest travel may have cost the State 75million Naira, complained that: “the governor is fond of piling his travel list with names of people purportedly travelling with him, most times CPS and media team, some people in the protocol team, relevant Commissioners and SAs related to the cause of his trip, and after the travel expenses are signed for and collected from the AG, he then handpicks whoever he likes and off he goes without the names on the list.”
Recall that CrossRiverWatch had earlier reported that Governor Ayade budgeted 1.4billion for his local and foreign travels in the 2019 budget.
For now, it is not clear when, the governor who promised at inauguration to relocate to Ikom and Ogoja to ensure speedy projects completion, will return to the state, but CrossRiverWatch will continue to watch out for the number one citizen of the nations paradise.