Bassey Inyang in Calabar
The Nigerian Navy has announced that it has decided to establish a Naval War College in Cross River State.
The Flag Officer Commanding (FOC), Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral Victor Olugbemi Adedipe, made the disclosure when he paid a courtesy visit to the state governor, Professor Ben Ayade yesterday.
Adedipe, who assumed office recently at the naval command said â€œthe Navy Board, in its wisdom, decided to choose Cross River State as the host for the prestigious Naval War College.â€
The FOC therefore urged Ayade to â€œtake a frontal role in ensuring that the land allocated to the navy for this project is officially given in line with the Land Use Act.â€
Adedipe who is the 34th FOC of the Eastern Naval Command, told the governor that he will sustain the cooperation that existed between the state government, his predecessors, and the various security agencies in a bid to check the activities of criminals.
Addressing the naval delegation, Ayade, said he was soliciting the support of Nigerian Navy in the area of security as the construction of the Bakassi Deep Sea Port will commence in August.
Ayade stated that the support of the navy in the aspect of security will check activities of miscreants who may use the various exit points on the waterways to cause various crimes that could negatively affect the expected huge workforce.
â€œThe construction of the deep seaport cannot start if you and I are not working together by close of August; the contractors will start mobilising to site for preliminary works on the construction of the Bakassi Deep Seaport. It is being built at the mouth of the Atlantic Ocean and so, definitely, it is a naval project by nature, and we will be having nearly 13,000 workers on a daily basis traversing through the waterways to get to the site.
â€œThere is no way the navy will not show a permanent presence. Therefore, we will need a permanent naval post at the construction site, and the entrance of the construction site, with a patrol vessel that is ocean-going so that you can patrol the whole of Bakassi Peninsula, and the border between Nigeria and Cameroon to ward off crime and unwanted people who will come in for criminality,â€Ayade said.
Ayade stated that it was only good security that can guarantee the confidence of investors to bring in their money to industrialise the state.
â€œWe have 33 points which people can take through the creeks and get out of Calabar. The greatest challenge is to have the naval presence in those areas,â€ the governor said.
He stressed the need for the navy to collaborate with the stateâ€™s security outfit,â€Operation Skolomboâ€ to protect the shoreline and to operate as a team in their renewed zeal to check activities of miscreants.
Commenting on the proposed Navy War College in Calabar, Ayade lauded President Buhari, Acting President Yemi Osinbajo, the Chief of Naval Staff, Admiral Ibok-Ette Ibas who thought it wise to approve its establishment in Cross River State, pointing out that â€œI have actually approved a place of choice for the war college to be built. We will liase with the community, pay the appropriate compensation so that we can take over the place and issue them with C of O.
He charged the State Security Adviser, Jude Ngaji and the commissioner for works to fast track the process of the land acquisition within four weeks to enable the Naval Course 2 kickoff as soon as possible.
In a related development, the governor enjoined the newly posted Service Commander, 13 Brigade, Calabar, Brig General Ismaila Isa, to upscale internal security measures by introducing military checkpoints at strategic points of entry and exit. This, the governor maintained will help in the protection of lives and property while allowing the state retain its status as the most peaceful in the country.