The Senate on Tuesday 21st May held a Public Hearing on A Bill for An Act To Establish the Federal College of Forestry Technology and Research, Akamkpa sponsored by Distinguished Senator Gershom Bassey representing Cross River South Senatorial District.
Senator Jubril Barau, the Senate Committee Chairman on Tertiary Institution and Tetfund applauded the efforts of Senator Gershom Bassey in trying to ensure that Cross River State and Nigeria as a whole benefits from the rich forest resources of Akamkpa. He spoke very highly of Senator Gershom Bassey’s legislative contributions in the 8th Senate and urged the public to support the Bill.
The Commissioner of Petroleum Resources of Cross River State, Rt. Hon. Itaya Asuquo who represented Governor Ben Ayade in the Public Hearing enjoined members of the public to lend their support to this very important Bill which promises to be of great benefit to the Pharmaceutical Industry and Nigeria as a whole. Ntufam Richard Efa in his Key Note address also spoke of the advantages of having a College of Forestry Research in the source of its research materials.
The representative of the Minister of Agriculture spoke glowingly in support of the Bill, he stated that the Minister of Agriculture was fully in support of the establishment of the Federal College of Forestry in Akamkpa and the benefits it will bring to Nigeria.
The Rt. Hon. Ntufam Daniel Asuquo, member representing Akamkpa and Biase Federal Constituency of Cross River State in the House of Representatives also spoke about the medicinal benefits of forest materials and the need to have a College of Forestry in Akamkpa.
His Royal Highness, Ntufam Stephen Obe, the Paramount Ruler of Oban Clan, Prof. Itari and Hon. Mathew Olori called on the public to support the Bill so as to ensure its smooth sail in the National Assembly.
Bar. Ita Essien, the SLA to Sen. Gershom Bassey talked about some trees that are indigenous to Akamkpa which are very resistant to adverse weather conditions like Albyzia Zygia and Khaya Grandifila. He stated that with proper research, these tree species can be used to combat desertification in the Northern region of Nigeria. He implored the public to support the Bill in its entirety.
The Cross River Development Association of Abuja and Esop Ndito Efik Eburutu Abuja Chapter were present and gave support to the Bill.
Without a dissenting voice,the Bill was well received by the people and government of Nigeria.