Cross River State Governor, Ben Ayade
Cross River State government has called on its federal counterpart to urgently implement the Niger Delta Development Commission’s (NDDC) master plan to ensure meaningful growth of the region.
The state governor’s Special Assistant on NDDC Affairs, Mr. Victor Ekpo, who made the call in Calabar in a chat with newsmen at the weekend, said the master plan has been on the shelf for many years and the time has come for its implementation.
He pointed out that, the Niger Delta region has not tested development, as it should be because the master plan which is all-embracing, capturing several projects and programmes has been abandoned. He also decried the poor patronage of the state by the commission in terms of projects’ distribution.
Ekpo lauded the appointment of Ndoma-Egba, Nsime Ekere and Sylvester Nsa as chairman, managing director and commissioner respectively into the board of NDDC.
However, he stressed that there was need for the NDDC to do more for the state because “if you check 2015/2016 budget, a lot of laudable projects have been pushed to the background.
He charged the new board to go into the achieves and “look into the NDDC master plan and implement it because it will help develop the Niger Delta and take the boys off the creeks and check current level of militancy and pipeline vandalism.”
Ekpo promised to “go on an inspection of all NDDC projects in the state and report back to the governor, Professor Ben Ayade, who is passionate about the well-being of the people and the development of the state.”
On some of the commission’s projects that have been abandoned in the state, he called on NDDC contractors in the state “to go back to site because I know too well that they have abandoned NDDC projects in the state just as I seek a synergy between the state government and NDDC in area of human capacity building and infrastructure to bring down the dividend of democracy to the grassroots.”
He equally called on the Federal Government “to support our governor’s idea towards the super highway because the existing road has become a death trap.”
He added: “Let the result on the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) come out so that we can construct the road and bring economic dividend to the state.”