Akpan Etukudo Asare
The United States Consul General to Nigeria, Mr. John Bray has taken a tour of the Ayade Industrial Park where many Cross River State owned industries are being erected.
The state governor, Prof Ben Ayade in keeping with his style of receiving state and international dignitaries he conducted the consul general round the industrial park to show case his efforts.
The US leader said he was impressed with the industrialisation drive of the Governor within his three years in office.
“I am really impressed as I have not seen a lot of things like these in Nigeria in my five years in the country. Seeing all these developments in one area is very impressive,” the US Consul General remarked.
Bray was led to see the Cross River Garment Factory, the Rice Seeds and Seedlings Factory, the Calabar Pharmaceutical Company and the 21 megawatts power plant.
Bray said he was in Calabar to prepare grounds for upcoming international event which his country would champion.
On possible areas of collaboration between the United States and Cross River, he said it was evident that such exist already with the American-made tractors on ground at the rice seeds and seedlings factory as well as American engineers at the power plant.
His words: “There are always areas of collaboration. Seeing the American-made tractors in the rice city with United States engineers on ground, that is an evidence of collaboration between the United States and Nigeria, though from a private sector, but there is collaboration already.
“it is beautiful because government cannot do everything, so seeing the private sector here and United States products and engineers on ground, it is very great.”
In his reaction, Governor Ayade expressed delight that his efforts at developing the state were being acknowledged, adding that “it is a reflection of the fact that I have a pass mark from America and Germany. Americans don’t mince their words, when they want to say something to you, they will tell you truly how they feel.”
“This is my third year in office and we have gone round three factories with many more to go if we had the time. I wanted to take him to the largest banana plantation in Africa few minutes away from here, but I am sure we have other things to do, but one day we will be back and I will take them through.”
Ayade who commended Bray for accentuating and concentrating America investments and interest in Cross River, noted that the deployment of American turbines, engines and other machines in the factories remain a source of delight to him.