BORDERCOM Takes Baseline Survey Exercise To Akamkpa And Odukpani

By Solomon Asha – Calabar

The approach of Governor Ben Ayade led administration in Cross River towards bringing the state’s border Communities to the main stream of his aggressive and well articulated policy of development hinged on five years strategic planning is aimed at achieving holistic development of the border communities.

Director General, Cross River Border Communities Development Commission {BODERCOM}, Mr. Noel Ugbong, who stated this while on a visit to the two Local Government Councils of Akamkpa and Odukpani on Tuesday, June 22, 2020, explained that the governor’s development approach is not based on arm-chair philosophy but well-articulated plan to bring holistic transformation to the beneficial of border communities in the state.

At the Akamkpa Local Government Council, the DG and his team of Directors, principal and technical staff of the commission visited the Chairman of Akamkpa Local Government Council, Hon. Linus Bassey Etim, as part of their itinary to undertake a Baseline survey/needs assessment of border communities in the Local government.


Addressing the Chairman, the Vice Chairman, Leader of the Legislative council, Councilors and other principal officers of the council, the BORDERCOM Director General said that he and his team are in the LGA on the directive of His Excellency, Senator Professor Ben Ayade, who has asked them to reach out to all border communities in the state to carry out the above stated assignment and obtain data that will be inputted into the planning of the 2021-22 budget of the state for the development of border communities.
He explained that the data to be extracted will be useful and will serve as veritable instrument in the hand of the state government for the strategic 5-year development plan for the communities.

He disclosed that the data will also l aid the National Boundary commission, Federal Border communities Development commission and other development partners in their planning, stressing that the administration of Sen. Prof. Ayade is passionate about extending effective development to these border communities.

The BORDERCOM Director General said that Akamkpa as the largest Local government in Cross River State with 5, 003 square kilometers or 1, 932 square mi, with 20 border communities has enjoyed 14 BORDERCOM projects located in the area since the commission’s inception, adding that some time these border communities are far off even from the council headquarters/urban areas and can easily fall prey to external aggressors, a predicament which the government want to checkmate through carrying development closer to these border communities.

He further revealed that the baseline survey/needs assessment exercise is deliberately fashioned by the governor as a means of not just extracting data but to also give the communities the opportunity to decide what they want and not to impose projects by executive fiat which at times leads to duplication of projects in certain locality.

The DG told the people of Akamkpa that the LGA is dear to the governor and that as the council with large arable land and mineral resources, it holds great potentials for the state and asserted that the people were lucky to have Hon. Etim with versatile knowledge and connection throughout the state to be their Chairman at this time.

At Odukpani, the DG of BORDERCOM, Mr. Noel Ugbong and his team equally visited the Council Chairman, Miss Justina Joseph Edem, while in the Local government for the Baseline survey/needs assessment exercise for border communities in the Local Government as directed by the governor, Sen. Prof. Ben Ayade.

Addressing the chairman of Council and the vice Chairman, Leader of Legislative council, Councilors and other top officers of the Council, the BORDERCOM Director General extend the warm greetings of the governor to the people and commended them for choosing right by voting a woman who will weep the right sentiments to attract development to them, disclosing that the LGA is one of the Council that has produced great men and women at the state and national levels.
He also disclosed that statistics indicates that the Local government has one of the healthiest population in the state, which is one important indices that is paramount to development, adding, he explained that the history of mankind is that of constantly in the state of flux, movement and conflicts, and that the LGA has about the highest numbers of border communities outside Yala LGA.
Mr. Ugbong revealed that Odukpani has 28 border communities, meaning that the council has 28 communities that require utmost attention from the state government because of the constant conflicts from outside the state, explaining that currently there are not less than 20 BORDERCOM projects in the Local government since the establishment of the border commission, an indication that the Governor holds the LGA in high esteem., just as the people stood 100 percent for the governor during the elections.

Speaking further on the purpose of their visit, the DG disclosed that the governor had charged them to interact with the people to extract those useful information and data that will help the government to fast-track development to the border communities which are usually at the periphery which sometime even the council which naturally is supposed to be close to them seems so far because of these communities peculiar nature and circumstances.

The BORDERCOM Director General explained that the Governor sent them to come and abreast themselves with the people and interact with them to know their core needs to help government to intervene, and to document these needs to reflect in the 5-year strategic development plan of the border communities, and to be included in the 2012-22 budgets of the state, more so that the peoples needs varies from time to time.

According to him, the exercise will help government to be updating its records as budget will not be mere copy and paste business.

Mr. Ugbong also said that the baseline survey/needs assessment data being obtained will help the state in its development policy for these communities and to avoid wastage and duplication of projects, just as it will help the National Boundary Commission, the Federal Border communities Development Commission as well as other development partners in their development planning.

Mr. Ugbong intimated the people that the core areas of focus include education, health, security, water and sanitation and economic empowerment.

Speaking separately, both the Akamkpa and Odukpani Local Government Areas chairmen commended the state governor, Sen. Prof. Ben Ayade for remembering and having the people of their local Governments at heart, especially the border communities and promised to give the programme a full support and the needed attention to succeed, as the Odukpani LG council Chainman stressed on the issue of security and incessant attacks on the border communities of the LGA by the neighboring state.



Development Consultant, Writer, Editor-In-Chief/Publisher, Public/ Motivational Speaker, Public Affairs Analyst/Commentator, Social Mobilizer of high repute.

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