Buhari, Ayade Meet behind Closed-doors


Tobi Soniyi in Abuja

President Muhammadu Buhari and Cross River State Governor, Ben Ayade, tuesday met behind closed door at the State House in Abuja.

Ayade, who arrived the Presidential Villa at about 1p.m, was later taken to the president’s residence when they both met.

The meeting lasted about 40 minutes.
Sources said the governor discussed the proposed deep seaport project in his state.
The proposed Bakassi deep seaport and the 260kilometre superhighway are estimated to cost about N700 billion.

The deep seaport will boost the export of produce such as rice and banana as well as solid minerals.

The governor was also quoted to have said the deep seaport would not compete with existing Calabar ports, but would complement it because the Bakassi port would be a 16 metres draft and will accommodate mother vessels especially from the Far East.

Ayade had last year said the deep seaport had received presidential nod.
“Even in the face of several challenges and the fear that this project was impossible, the president has kept giving me proper encouragement and I am happy to acknowledged that,” he had said during the official visit of the Managing Director of Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA).

The federal government recently gave the state government the approval to recruit a transaction advisor for the project.

An advisory and implementation committee for the project had also been set up.