The Cross River State Governor, Ben Ayade has received the debt review and project development report.
He had in 2020 inaugurated the Debt Review and Project Development Committee to evaluate the debt and project development of the state covering the past 20 years.
Ayade, who received the document at the governor’s office in Calabar, expressed his desire to simplify governance, especially for the next administration.
“In the tradition and history of Cross River, we are brothers and we are our brothers’ keepers. This report is intended to guide us in making decisions going forward and not intended to witch hunt anybody or any group of persons.
“So whatever we find in the report, we will try to implement the recommendations to the extent that it can bring value to the state.
“It is not our intention to look backwards, but to learn from the past and develop a future that is stable and strong.”
According to him, “By virtue of this report, whoever is the incoming governor would not have to go to the primary data in kick-starting his administration as I did”, noting that implementing the recommendations would also enable him to avoid what he described as “exit syndrome.“
Governor Ayade expressed satisfaction with members of the committee a job well done, stating, “I am happy that you are led by a very competent chairman and secretary with members stretching from every sector like the maritime industry to the legislature.
“You have done a great job of taking a full surgical perspective and overview and a detailed crystallization of the entire debt profile of our state.
“I am also happy that your report contains details of projects, project completion, value for money analysis and all that I need to have that gives me a background that is close to almost 20 years to be able to equip me with all the information that I need to develop the Cross River 30-year development plan”, the governor hinted
Earlier, the Chairman of the 12-member committee, Chris Agara thanked the governor for allowing them the opportunity to serve the state.
Agara said, “This opportunity to serve has opened our eyes to what the issues are. It has made us understand the enormous burden and responsibilities on your shoulders to manage the revenue and resources of the state that has been so depleted before your assumption of office.”
Other members of the Debt Review and Project Development committee were Bassey Ndem, Higgins Peters and E.J. Williams, while Francis Ntamu served as secretary.