Saturday, 3 October 2020

This is the new Calabar under Ayade’s Watch

Calabar the capital city of Cross River State used to be one of the finest and cleanest in the entire 36 states and FCT of the Nation. Beginning from 2015 the state has gradually experienced a backward trend in terms of its cleanliness level. 

Calabar was so clean and green that many State governors visited to inquire of the Mr. Donald Duke, the then Governor, his secret in maintaining a clean state as he did. Since Mr. Duke left office, successive governments have been struggling in achieving the same feat to no avail.

Its on record that Mr. Duke's secret was the setting up of the state waste management office known as CUDA - Calabar Urban Development Authority. This agency was responsible the sweeping and cleaning of major streets and gutters in Calabar.

The Agency employed both semi skilled and unskilled youths and women. These women and Youths had the duty of keeping the state capital clean on a daily basis. But the advent of successive administration came and messed up the entire system with corruption.

Today Calabar is only a shadow of it self. Nobody could imagine that Mary Slessor, a street in the heart of Calabar city would house such a big refuse dump that has been unattended to for more than one day.

It is true that Ayade's government have tried unsuccessfully to make the collection of refuse work in the state but one thing is still lacking which is the will power to ensure family members and friends of government assigned these responsibilities dutifully carry out such functions without truancy.

Aside dirt and debris littered round the city of Calabar the roads are in terrible state. According to reports you can hardly drive through any street in Calabar without noticing at least 5 major potholes.

The governor, Sen. Prof. Ben Ayade has been quoted severally stating that he is not the kind of governor cut out to fix portholes. Those close to him believe he is more keen on ensuring the state state is industrialized, but even at that Cross Riverians are yet to see the effect of his industrial moves.

In fact a lawmaker in the Cross River State House of Assembly was once quoted to have said, "When Ayade leaves office in 2023, there will be no state for the next Governor to govern".

For Ayade, state beautification cannot go in sync with his industrial thrive, he can't industrialise the state and at the same time maintain infrastructures that will beautify the state. He was actually quoted to have said "I am not a cosmetic Governor"

Speaking with the DG, Greater Calabar Capital City Development Agency, Mr. Kingsley Ikpeme, he informed our reporter that the recent influx of people visiting the state and high high rate of migrant into Calabar has increase human activities which have also contributed to the increase dirt. He however, noted that his Agency and other sister MDA's such Waste management board, CUDA and Ministry of Environmental are working assiduously to restore the clean nature of the state.

Ikpeme informed that his Agency has been partnering with relevant Agencies to ensure the beautification of the state, he noted that he reorientation of citizens is at the forefront of his mandate.

Also the Cross River State Waste Management boss, Mr. Sunday Oko when contacted admitted that the state has experienced some form of dirt in the past one week due to challenges he described as minor technical challenges. But promised that his Agency will ensure the state is restored to his clean state.

According to Mr. Oko, Cross River State has experienced one of its best season in terms of cleanliness since he took over office.