CALABAR (Interior Ministry’ Report)- The Governor of Cross River State, Professor Ben Ayade, has commended the quick response of the Federal Government to the communal crisis between Wanihem and Wanikade communities in the state.
The Governor stated this when he recently received a Federal Government delegation led by the Minister of Interior, Lt General (Rtd) Abdulrahman Bello Dambazau, in Calabar, the state capital.
Prof. Ayade expressed appreciation to the Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, for his interest in matters affecting the state, as in the case of the prompt response of dispatching the Interior Minister to assist in finding lasting solution to the communal land dispute in the state.
Governor Ayade thanked the Government of President Muhammadu Buhari for giving Cross River State a pride of place in the administration, particularly in the appointment of indigenes of the state to federal government positions.
He said the state has boundaries with over four states in the country, alongside international boundaries, which naturally result to frequent skirmishes, particularly in the boundary regions.
The Governor drew the Federal Government’s attention to the recent alleged eviction of Bakassi indigenes from Cameroon by the gendarmes. The situation, according to him, has brought untold hardship to the people, as they lack accommodation, with many of them living in their boats without any means of livelihood.
He commended the Minister for his willingness to personally visit the communities, to ascertain the level of destruction in the area.
Speaking earlier, the Minister of Interior, Lt General (Rtd) Abdulrahman Bello Dambazau, said he was directed by the Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, to visit the warring communities, dialogue with them and restore law and order.
The Minister commended the security services in the state for their prompt action to stem the tide of destruction of lives and property.
On the issue of the alleged eviction of Nigerians from Cameroon, he assured the governor that the Federal Government, through the Minister of Foreign Affairs has already summoned the Ambassador of Cameroon for discussions.
He informed the governor that Nigeria has signed a tripartite agreement with Cameroon and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) on the voluntary return of refugees in an orderly and dignified manner, and affirmed that the agreement is being implemented.