Cross River: PDP Chieftain Decries Politicizing Ogoja Rice, Says Single Grain Yet To Be Produced

In Breaking News, Politics

By Judex Okoro, The Sun Newspaper

Controversy has continued to trail Cross River Governor Ben Ayade’s industrialization programs, with a chieftain of the State’s People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Dr. Dorn Cklaimz Enamhe, decrying the politicization of Ogoja Rice, insisting that not a single grain of rice has been produced by the factory.

Penultimate week, PDP State leadership, through the Publicity Secretary, raised the alarm over the Governor’s social media post that Ogoja Rice has commenced production.

Reacting to a viral video which elugosed Governor Ben Ayade over the victimized Ogoja Rice Mill, Enamhe, the former Special Adviser to Ayade, said trying to fabricate video clips on social media showing that the Ogoja Rice factory has commenced production is an indication that the Ayade administration has skeletons in its cupboard with regard to its supposed industrialization of the State.

Enahme, the Director-General of the Senator Jarigbe Campaign Organization, implored the governor to redeem his promise to Cross Riverians by completing the numerous uncompleted projects before leaving office in 2023.

Frowning at the perennial habit of leading notable Cross Riverians to inspect uncompleted industries to give credibility to his government, he alleged that the video circulated, especially through social media, was doctored for deceitful purposes.

According to him, “I was invited three months ago along with other selected stakeholders from the Northern senatorial district for an on-the-spot assessment of the Ogoja rice mill and to proffer the way forward having been sealed up for years.

“I applauded the vision but raised concern over pre-arranged bags awaiting sealing by strange faces parading as workers. I also cited glaring lapses including the absence of power supply, lack of water, the alarming distance from the source of raw materials for production, and other issues which were supposed to be addressed from inception in the feasibility report on the project.

“Unknown to me that the film tricks acted at the rice seedlings plant in Calabar where they hired equipment from the United States to deceive even President Buhari was being replicated.

“Issues I raised there have been edited out of the video in circulation. And even after circulating the video, the Ogoja rice mill is not producing neither is Ogoja rice found in the market anywhere in the north. Sharing video does not mean the mill is in production. I challenge those who shared the video to also share a video of the Ogoja mill in production and packaging the rice for our consumption.

“I also challenge the Governor to open these glorified warehouses christened as industries for inspection by Nigerians instead of the social media gimmicks. Let’s see the products from the so-called over 20 factories in the markets. These industries include Ultra Modern Rice Seedling plant in Calabar, Kissimie noodles, toothpick, Cross River State Chicken Processing factory (Calachika) in Calabar, CalaPharm, Pile and Pylons in Akamkpa, Banana plantation in odukpani, Roofing tiles factory in Ogoja, Cross River State Toot Pick factory in Yakurr, and factory in Bekwarra, This is my humble request to my governor.”

He further said if he commended the governor’s project because he was misled into believing that the project was successful, then the governor should also commend Senator Jarigbe, who has taken over the responsibilities of the governor, by carrying out numerous infrastructural projects and human empowerment programs in Cross River North, including the governor’s own village.

He added that the governor, rather than showing bad blood and hate, should thank Sen. Jarigbe for ameliorating the sufferings of the people and filling the gaps created by inept leaders, in their social contracts with the people as 54 wards within the district have benefitted from various projects.

On the senatorial contest between Sen. Jarigbe and the Ayade ahead of 2023, Enamhe stated that Jarigbe has nothing to worry about given the impact he has created in the area just within a year.

“The projects, human capacity development, and other initiatives, intended to better the lot of our people facilitated by the two protagonists, will determine the outcome of the election. But I can tell you for sure that we are defeating Ayade before 12:00 noon on election day.”

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