Governor Liyel Imoke
The Cross River Elders Forum rose from a meeting in Calabar at the weekend with a request that the Federal Government should revisit the judgment of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) that ceded Bakassi Peninsular to the Republic of Cameroun.
The group in a communiqué signed Col. Pam Ogar (rtd), Senator Joseph Oqua Ansa, Dr. Ambrose Akpanika, Ukandi Gabriel Ogar, Ntufam Mathew Ojong, Rev.(Mrs.) Grace Ekanem and Professor Roland Ndoma-Egba said it has become imperative to revisit that judgment on account of new evidence that have surfaced.
As a first step in that regard, the group wants the appropriate Federal Government agency to “immediately ask for extension of the 10-year period for the completion of the handing over process of Bakassi beyond October, 2012.”
While frowning “at the twists and dislocations in the handling of the Bakassi matter before and after the ICJ ruling,” the elders also demanded that “the 76 oil wells ceded to Akwa Ibom State in violation of well-meaning, peace-keeping and soothing agreement that served politically to mitigate the agitation for resource control, should immediately be reversed to Cross River State.”
It also wants the Senate to open deliberations on the “abandoned Report of the Senate Committee on the Bakassi with a view to revisiting the case.”
The group called on the people of Cross River “to keep calm” just as it implored the Federal Government “to take a final and lasting political decision on the sharing of Off-shore oil derivation or compensation revenue to the Sea-ward or Littoral States.
“Oil Revenue Derivation from On-shore exploitation is exclusive to the oil producing states. However, Off-shore revenue due to the Sea-ward states should be shared equally as the reverses suffered would be similar.”