Cross River State Governor Senator Ben Ayade has resigned his position as the State Tourism Commissioner.
Ayade who said he feels “thoroughly ashamed as Tourism Commissioner” because of his abysmal performance added that he lost focus in advancing the state tourism drive.
The Governor announced his resignation when he played host to a delegation from Mafikeng, South Africa who are in the state for a 3-Day working visit.
Ayade who said tthe visit will afford Mafikeng to finalize the plans for a partnership deal with the state lamented that he has focused more on industrialization thus loosing focus on setting up of a floating restaurant at the Marina Resort.
According to him, “I feel thoroughly ashamed as commissioner for tourism. I do recognize that at this point my Special Adviser on Tourism must be driven back into the front burner and possibly I have to disengage from that office as commissioner for tourism. I need to give it to somebody to give it the push, to give it the energy that is required”.
Continuing he said that, “Very soon the state will have the announcement of a new commissioner for tourism correspondingly, that gives us an opportunity to appoint a commissioner for infrastructure that has been outstanding.
“I feel ashamed also as commissioner for tourism that I have so much wealth and I got so much engaged with industrialization that I didn’t realize that there are these quick cheap wins that I could take advantage of”
The governor said his visit to South Africa recently had presented a challenge of siting the International hotel school even as he added that Marina resort was the right location as the current lease contract has elapsed.
He promised the state will acquire a floating restaurant in three months.
“Cross River State, we have no hesitation whatsoever to partner with Mafikeng, indeed we have already signed a twin sister agreement between Calabar and Mafikeng. Cross River State is going to set up a state owned institution, a state owned company that is going to partner with you,” Ayade maintained.
Also speaking, the head of the team, Advocate Neo Sephoti, urged the governor to consider a workable plan that can transform the Marina Resort and the state School of Nursing to an International hotel school with hostels.
Sephoti added that floating a restaurant in the area will boost patronage due to the attractive nature of water.