Ben Ayade

How Ayade fared in his “active first 100 days”

benDrawing parallels in the dynamics in administration between Professor Ben Ayade, the Cross River State governor and  Senator Liyel Imoke, the immediate past governor, Ayade’s administrative style as observed  in the past one hundred  days  seemingly points  towards  a marked departure from the pastWhilst Imoke had a mature, sedate, laidback and one -step at- a –time  approach to governance, Professor Ayade is clearly toeing a populist even if business-like path.

His drive to fast track his developmental agenda came to the surface minutes after he was sworn in to office when he announced that he would within  the first 100 days in office flag off the construction  of a 250 kilometre  super highway  linking a new sea port  at Akpabuyo in the southern part of the state  to the Obudu  Ranch  Resort in the northern part of the state on build, operate and transfer basis. Within the same period too, he also promised the commencement of construction of a new seaport in the state to take bigger vessels since the existing Calabar Port channel  cannot take big ships.

The sign of Ayade’s businesslike approach to governance was given on 2nd June,  his first day in office. As early as 7 am, he was on his desk and after waiting for about two hours with majority of workers yet to show up for work, he ordered the security men to shut  the governor’s  office gate. When he came out at 10am, he told the “stranded” workers to either sit up or be flushed out of the state civil service  as there is a new order in the state.

He said the government would endeavour to pay salaries on the 25th of every month but tasked the workers to reciprocate the gesture by being dedicated to their duties.

Permanent secretaries

He ordered permanent secretaries in all the ministries and departments in the state to open time books and ensure that they rule off everyone who signs after 8 am to enable the authorities know who the late comers are. Since the order, “the not on seat”,   phrase which was a familiar refrain   in most government offices is now almost nonexistent as everyone reports for work at the right time and stay till close of work.

During a visit to the  Cross River State Water Board headquarters in Calabar he upbraided the management and staff for the epileptic water supply and demanded an immediate change in the situation. Since his visit, residents of the city now enjoy regular water supply.

The beauty of the city which was once messed up by heaps of garbage  is gradually being regained as the  shoddy evacuation of refuse by the contractors handling refuse disposal. The governor had threatened to revoke and split the contracts should the situation fail to improve and since the threat, the rubbish bins  are now regularly evacuated.

In pursuit of funding for his “signature projects” which include a garment factory, 250 kilometre super highway, cement factory, seaport that are expected to guzzle billion of dollars, Professor Ayade went off on two weeks tour of two European nations, Germany and Spain.

In Germany, he signed quality control agreement with a group of partners for the construction of the super highway while in Spain, he sourced for technical partners to work as “staff on the payroll of Cross River State government for the construction of the seaport and cement factory”.

Asked on what informed his choice of signature projects, the governor told Vanguard: “My choice of signature projects is based on the understanding of Cross River State as a land enormously blessed that  has been tottering for so long which  we have to make a break from and articulate our role in the world through a  realisable business  model by reducing all those high sounding terminologies to simple basic processes for development”.

He said he sought elective office to improve lives and to add value to the lives of the people of the state and as well develop infrastructure.

Already, recruitment has started for widows to work at the garment factory and another one thousand to serve as green police to oversee the state’s vast forest resources. Sill on efforts to mitigate the low income earners from poverty, Ayade has announced their exemption from taxation. Those earning below N30,000 monthly in the private and public sectors will no longer pay taxes

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Posted by on Nov 1 2015. Filed under Gallery. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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