*Ceding Bakassi on ICJ decision remains a loss
Acting President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, has assured the people of Bakassi and government of Cross River state that the Federal Government remained committed to addressing the plight of the displaced people in Bakassi, in line with the Buhari presidency’s policy on serving the interest of all Nigerians regardless of their affiliations.
Osinbajo stated this while responding to issues raised by stakeholders at the town hall meeting in Calabar, organised in continuation of the series of engagements with leaders in the Niger Delta region.
Expressing sympathy with the indigenes of Bakassi, Osinbajo said, “the ceding of Bakassi as a result of the judgement of the International Court of Justice is a development that we all consider a loss.’’
“But the president strongly believes that while we ruminate over the legal issues we must not allow Nigerian citizens in Ikang and elsewhere to suffer. The Federal Government will certainly do more and engage more with the displaced in Bakassi. This is our duty and our commitment,’’ he added.
Speaking on the relationship between soldiers and some residents of Bakassi, he assured that the government “will also thoroughly investigate the issues raised on the relationship between the military, the militants and the people of Bakassi’’, with a view to find a lasting solution to the problem.
Osinbajo said the Buhari administration would not hesitate to support viable programmes and initiatives that would make living better for Nigerians, adding that “the vision of President Muhammadu Buhari for Nigeria is one where the Federal Government partners with the States to create industrial, commercial and professional opportunities for all our citizens.
The acting president further explained that “the Federal Government is certainly interested in Cross River, the President himself re-negotiated the China-EXIM loan for the Lagos-Calabar rail line and in the 2017 budget have provided for the Udokpani/Ikot Ekpene road.’’
He mentioned other projects at different stages of execution in the state to include, the Calabar-Ogoja road, Adiabo-Okurikang Erosion Control, Eastern Naval Command Erosion Control Project Phase 1 and NewMap Erosion Control Project at Ikot Nkebre mass slide Erosion site.
Osinbajo also urged the people of the state not to relent in ensuring the unity of the state and country as they continue to set the pace in the tourism and hospitality sector in Nigeria.
Before going in for the town hall meeting, he met with owners of small businesses at the ongoing Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) Clinic after seeing an exhibition of made-in-Nigeria products.
He was accompanied to the forum by Ministers of Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachukwu, Niger Delta Affairs, Pastor Usani Uguru Usani, the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Mrs Winiefred Oyo-Ita, the Coordinator of the Amnesty Office, Paul Boroh, Chairman of the NDDC Board, Senator Ndoma Egba, among other dignitaries.