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Ben Akak lauds vision behind C’River Power Plant, vows to sustain Ayade’s industrialization drive

Ben Akak lauds vision behind C’River Power Plant, vows to sustain Ayade’s industrialization drive

A governorship hopeful under the All Progressives Congress in Cross River, Engr. Ben Akak, has lauded Governor Ben Ayade for the vision behind the establishment of Cross River Power Plant, vowing that he would sustain the industrialization drive of the administration if voted in as governor in 2023.

Akak who stated this on Wednesday during his first leg statewide tour of projects executed by the present administration, stressed that power supply is one of the prerequisites for economic development and that the power plant located at Parliamentary Extension, Calabar, would be a game changer when the power from it is fully evaluated and put to maximum use.

He appreciated governor Ayade for taking the bold step, promising that if elected, the power plant will be maintained and improved upon to ensure constant power supply to Calabar residents, while also exploring other options such as hydro and gas power generation in other parts of the state to promote even development.

The business mogul equally hinted that he would work with the Governor’s Forum to effect amendment to extant laws to enable states use the power they generate without having to feed them first into the national grid, as it is the case at the moment, since power generation is in the exclusive list.

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“The state independent power plant is working as you can see it. As we speak it’s currently powering the street lights. The only stop gap we have as we speak is the legislation from the federal and state that has stopped it from being linked to the national grid. The state power plant established by governor Ben Ayade is working.

“We know that it’s in the exclusive list, that’s why I said we are going to do a lot. Within the Governor’s Forum, which is very powerful, we will do a lot to lobby members of the National Assembly to change that legislation, to make it concurrent list for the state to begin to generate power. That’s the only way we can achieve development and progress faster.

“Look at what is happening in Itu. I am suffering just because we are waiting for Itu to be put together, but if this power was generated here I don’t need to bother about what happens in Itu. We must look at ourselves and say the truth. And I’m saying that Cross River State through the effort of Ben Ayade has been able to start a process and we, taking over from him will make sure that that process doesn’t die. This project will not die.

“Any state that is capable to generate power should do it, even individuals, if you have the capacity you do it. But again, we do not want a situation whereby it’s going to be abuse. So there’s going to be a process and legislation put in place – there’s going to be strict adherence to due process and to ensure that the standard is maintained.

“Again, the environment is very important and you know power generation is very sensitive. All that put together is what is going to give us the best in this country. And you know power is very important in development – if you get it right you get every other aspects.

“We have discussed it. We also talked about the hydro. Thank God we have the Senior Special Adviser to the Governor on Technical, who is able to share to us deeply the plans of the governor, that beyond just setting this hydro power plant, which we talked about the Qua Fall, the Agbokim Waterfall and the Ranch. All these are ways of making sure that we liberalized the process and have more power in circulation for our people”, he said.

Other projects toured include the Cross River Garment Factory, Cala Pharm, Kisimie Instant Noodles Plant, Calachika and the Rice Seeds and Seedlings Factory, all located within the Ayade Industrial Park, Calabar.

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