The Etsu Nupe and Niger State Chairman of the Traditional Rulers’ Council Alhaji Yahaya Abubakar and the Oluwo of Iwoland, Oba Abdulrasheed Adewale Akanbi, at the weekend, commended the state governor, Senator Ben Ayade for what they described as the industrialization drive of his administration.
The two monarchs who particularly applauded the existing cordiality between past and present governors in the state, a feat they affirmed was rare among many states, said: “There is no doubt that the focus of the governor is how to turn Cross River’s economy around through rapid industrialization. This is laudable as it shows where the state is headed in the next couple of years.”
The duo were in Calabar, to grace the book launch written by a son of the state.
Etsu Nupe said: “Since we arrived, we have seen a lot of peace in the state, a lot of understanding and a lot of zeal to develop. We also discovered that the governor, Prof Ben Ayade, has a good working team especially with his deputy, commissioners, former governors and we also believe that his people are happy with this development.”
According to the monarch, “this feat in the state is rare among many states in the country and we pray Almighty God to continue to sustain this in the life of the governor and the entire state in spite of challenges.”
Abubakar, who on arrival to the state earlier a paid visit to the Obong of Calabar, Edidem Ekpo Okon Abasi Otu v, disclosed that issues bordering on sustainable peace, unity and understanding among Nigerians topped their chat, adding that, “as the traditional institution, we observe things and offer advice where necessary,” adding thay “we also appreciate that in spite of people positions, they listen to us.”
For Oba Akambi, “this is the first time two professors are piloting the affairs of a state as governor and deputy governor and above all understanding themselves with governance moving smoothly.”
Continuing, the Oluwo of Iwoland said: “Surprisingly at the book launch we saw the former governor, Senator Liyel Imoke and you putting your heads together. This is hardly seen in many states of the federation, so I say, the people of Cross River need to be emulated for setting a pace.”
Responding, Cross River governor, Prof Ben Ayade said: “I am happy you all took note of these for this is the only existing state that the sitting and former governors are five and six.”
Ayade assured that “Cross River will continue to maintain its status as the leading light of civilization. We lead and must show because if today we are the epicenter of hospitality in Nigeria and indeed Africa, we must conduct ourselves in such a way that we remain a shining example.”
On the cordiality with his deputy even as professors, the governor pointed out that “we have displayed such a classic balance, we are such a healthy combination, intellectually my deputy has been of great value, truly, we got a great team and he has displayed total loyalty.”
On some of his landmark achievement across the state, Ayade explained: “I wish you had time to move around and see our projects and we are a state that when we want to pay salaries, workers will start begging us not to pay that early, even when some states are owing for months.”
The visit to the governor by these monarchs featured the presentation of gifts by the Etsu Nupe as well as a book entitled: “Iwo Odidere,” donated to the governor’s library by the Oluwo of Iwoland.