LEGISREPORTS NG – A member representing Bakassi, Akpabuyo and Calabar South federal constituency in the House of Representatives, Hon Essien Ekpenyong Ayi has berated the federal government over its inability to resettle displaced Bakassi people, 12 years after the ceding of the peninsularto Cameroon.
Speaking at Anantigha, Calabar South of Cross River state as hundreds of the displaced people who are now putting up temporarily at St Mark’s Primary School, Akpabuyo, the lawmaker expressed worry that despite the trauma the people were passingthrough with the ceding of their homeland, the federal government was not showing enough commitment and has decided to give deaf ears.
Ayi who said he had, through numerous motions in the House, drew the attention of the federal government to the plight of the Bakassi people, added that if a group of people within a state could, by themselves, approach the International Court of Justice (ICJ) over the issue, Bakassi natives would have done so.
“Few years ago, I moved a motion for the speedy resettlement of thedisplaced people. I later moved a motion asking the FG to take stepfor the review of that ICJ judgement in 2012.
Those motions were overwhelmingly passed but nothing concrete came out on the side of the government.“After their refusal to appeal the judgment, the government decided to set up a so-called committee despite the fact that many phantom committees had been set up previously without any tangible result.
“Till date no effort has been made to speedily implement the recommendation of the immediate past committee, which was headed by the Vice President.
People are suffering and living in an open place without any form of amenities, and government is busy playing politics with their collective destiny.
“I tell you the home truth now, the federal government is not sincere over the issue of Bakassi. If they were, they would have pursued, atleast, the resettlement to its logical conclusion.
Today, they would say Dayspring, tomorrow, Ikang.
They keep on dribbling and taunting the traumatized people. The federal government is not interested in Bakassi, that’s all,” he stated angrily.
This report was prepared by our reporter in Calabar.