Governor Ben Ayade & his Antics of Frustrating Indigenous Businesses —By Ifere Paul

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Prince Jedy-Agba(L), Gov. Ayade(R)

Ifere Paul|28 November 2016

Sometime in September, we were informed by CrossRiverWatch that Prince Goddy Jedy-Agba,OFR, was going to launch his radio station on the 1st of October. The radio station when completed, would employ at least 150 staff divided between, broadcasters, talkshow hosts, panelists, human resource management, marketers, advertisers, engineers, and security panels.

The Radio Station operating on the Frequency Modulation (FM) is driven on the premise of giving Cross River State an alternative voice, and a platform for artisan/technical manpower development. It has the best state of the art broadcasting equipments in modern radio communication & technology the world can offer. The FM Station when completed will cover a radius of over 300km. Giving it one of the best coverage in Cross River State and beyond. This great masterpiece FM Station otherwise known as VibesFM is located in State Housing Estate in Calabar, opposite Ayade Mega Hilton Hotel.

According to information available to me, Governor Ben Ayade has directed that the Radio Station be demolished or shutdown from further construction of its mast system. The entire premises of the radio station has been shutdown and sealed with red tape by the Ministry of Environment, Cross River State. This has delayed broadcasting and production of entertainment.

It has also prevented Prince Goddy Jedy-Agba, OFR, from employing people into this radio station, even though many are waiting on the sidelines. Whether this action is a deliberate action by Governor Ayade, it is yet to be established. But the truth remains that there is an invisible hand remotely responsible.

According to a source with information about the issue, Jedy Agba left Abuja to Calabar to meet with government official responsible for the shutting down of his business premises. But even at that, the commissioner of Lands and Survey, Dr John Inyang left Calabar under the guise of a retreat in Obudu.

As a law abiding citizen, Prince Goddy Jedy-Agba has approached a lawyer to write to government, giving them ultimatum to unseal his business premises. Failure by government to do the needful will necessitate a law suit against the government and its officials.

It can therefore be seen that the Ben Ayade administration is only poised at running Cross River State aground.

For a long time, the people of the Central Senatorial District has cried out to government about the inadequate reach of the moribund CRBC FM. The FM does not reach places like Abi, Yakurr, Obubra, Etung, etc. Now that Prince Goddy Jedy-Agba, OFR, in his kindness has decided to set up a private station to fill the gap in order to inform and entertain the people of these areas, Governor Ben Ayade is restless, and has set up a machinery to thwart Prince Goddy Jedy-Agba's efforts.

According to sources at the government house, Governor Ben Ayade believes that the radio station is built to work against his popularity.

In September, government has turned down a Cross Riverian from the UK who brought investors into the State to invest in modular refineries. The UK based lawyer cum businessman was asked 11 Billion Naira Only for lands he demanded for his companies.

Another investor who was to build a recycling plant to cater for the excessive garbage on the street of Calabar and other parts of the State was not properly attended to until he left the State in annoyance.

The Cross River State government is owning the company which is responsible for the supply of waste dumpsters and compactor trucks Millions they don't want to pay. Speaking with the contractor, he told me that as a Cross Riverian, “I feel really pained in the heart that our Governor does not see the efforts I made to help remove the State from the embarrassment of not being able to evacuate its waste. I thought I was dealing with sensible people. Do you know that up til now, the government has not called me to inquire how much they are to pay for providing them with the dumpsters and compactors you see in Calabar everyday?”

These are some of the instances that shows that Ayade does not want to encourage Cross Riverians. You will either see him flanked by Asians or investors from other States. But never a Cross Riverian.

He is now fighting his own brother from the same Obudu in the name of party dichotomy. He has also refused to pay Cross River Watch monies Liyel Imoke own them.

The only thing Governor Ben Ayade wants Cross Riverians to do is to hawk on the streets. That is why he signed the bill to allow hawking in the State into law. Governor Ayade will have been very happy to see Jedy's children hawking pure water in the streets of Calabar,(God forbid) but not to own a modern state of art radio station.

Ifere Paul
Is a Public Policy Analyst