Cross River: Hoodlums take over venue of palliatives, cart away food items meant for distribution

Some persons suspected to be miscreants on Friday, took over the venue of palliative distribution in Bakassi Local Government Area of Cross River.

DAILY POST gathered that the state Governor, Prof Ben Ayade, who was scheduled to distribute palliatives to the people of the local government particularly the Internally Displaced People (IDPs), did not show up.

Some of the IDPs, who spoke to our correspondent under severe condition that their names would not be mentioned, lamented the non-appearance of the governor after waiting from 11am to 6pm

“The annoyance of the people was that most of the invited guests were traditional rulers, clergies and important personalities in the local government and the state who waited for so long without seeing the governor.

“After waiting for so long, some miscreants and area boys invaded the place and forcefully took over the food items that had been kept for distribution. This happened when it was obvious that the governor wasn’t coming again.

“Though, not all were miscreants and area boys, other people invaded the place, took food items while others scattered the entire food items that were brought for distribution to the allottees including Rice, Noodles and others Food stuffs,” the people told our reporter separately.

Consequently, the situation became so tensed that some people ran for their safety as the alleged area boys became violence thereby attacking people and allegedly seized people’s valuables such as phones and handbags.

Earlier, the state Commissioner for Information, Asu Okang, had in a statement said that as part of activities to mark the 2020, June 12 Democracy Day, the governor will be handing over the 52 buildings at the Bakassi IDP resettlement estate to allottees.

Traditional rulers, appointees and other dignitaries were invited to the event which was schedule to hold by 11.30am today but as at 6pm there was no sign of Governor being there and there was no word from the governor, everyone had to disperse.

Speaking with the Chairman of Bakassi Local Government Area, Hon Iyadim Amboni Iyadim on Saturday via phone, Hon Iyadim, lamented the sad and disappointing situation, saying that he was not told what the Governor was coming to do in his local government area.

“I was not at the venue of the function; I was at the welcome to Bakassi point to receive the governor when I was told that the governor was coming to my local government. So I cannot tell what actually happened there (venue). I was waiting to receive the governor.

“We waited at the welcome to Bakassi till 6pm and when I saw people coming, I asked and was told that may be the governor was not coming again since it was 6pm and they left.

“About the truck that carried the food items, I could not know the one that was conveying the palliatives as they were many trucks that pass because most of them were sealed. The fact was that I did not know what the Governor was coming to do in my local government neither was I put in the know about the event.

“They were supposed to have informed me know as the chairman of local government, this is what Mr Governor was coming to do, take charge of them but I was not told.

“I was later told that palliatives were brought to my people. The function was a state function and I cannot tell the people anything because I was at the checkpoint from morning till evening. I was not a party to anything,” Iyadim stated.

Consequently, Governor Ayade’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Christian Ita told DAILY POST on Saturday said the absence of the governor at the venue was not intentional

“The function was not the distribution of houses; the houses have been distributed already. It was the distribution of palliatives. What happened was that the truck that carried the palliatives had issues on the road and the governor could not come until the truck came and the truck came very late.

“That was why the Governor could not go. There is no issue about that and he, the Governor has demonstrated love to the people. Have you gone there to see the kind of estates they are leaving now, there is no issue.

“He always go there, this is a man that built houses for the people, gave them generator and other things, what is palliatives? It is the truck conveying the palliatives that spoiled that caused the delay,” he said.

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