Cross River State is not resting on its month long premium tourism product, Carnival Calabar, the state is on overdrive to up its octopus hold on the sector with a sport tourism cycling project dubbed Akwacross.
The game plan is keep the state continuously in focus with strategic and sustainable tourism activities, building up an entirely dependent economy on tourism culture, environment and other down stream influncers of the business.
Akwacross cycling project which is specially dedicated to enhancing the historical and cultural relationship between the people of Akwa Ibom and Cross River states, who share similar narratives on culture, dances, language, fashion and gastronomy, comes up on March 14, an innovation critical to generating domestic visitations and reconnection.
It is also promised to drive excellence in sports and physical wellbeing of the people, not excluding visitors as a well toned body notably contribute to the progress and advancement of humanity.
That’s not all about the rebirth and restructuring of tourism agenda of this state blessed with virgin aquatic and natural resources endowment as plans are afoot to organize the biggest training program for the hospitality operators and investors come 19th March, 2020.
Already, obudu resort on the northern fringes of the state is back on the tour circuit. This iconic resort with surreal landscape and cable car, remain the state’s best highly sought after tourist delight and activator of structured visits.
Eric Anderson, the honourable commissioner for tourism, disclosed that all tour sites in the states will receive facelift to make them attractive to investors and tourists.
“We are carefully addressing issues that help us create a true tourism environment that will place the state as most visited in Africa and at same time develope verifiable tourism economy capable of providing jobs and help protecting our prime fauna and flora ecosystem.” he explained.
Anderson who promised to sufficiently link other key tourism product drivers into top finishing ranking, stated that marine tourism will not be left out on the cross River tourism agenda as plans to give the iconic marina resort a big boost to increase the unusual visitors traffic to the city center located recreation site.
“We are sure cross River State can make a big statement apart from our carnival Calabar project. Our desire is to be seen as the best destination in Nigeria nay Africa. We are determined to prove a point and we are encouraged by the governor to make this state the most preferred among local and international visitors,” Anderson said.
Man, 56, Defiles Neighbour’s 10-Year-Old Girl, Remanded
An Ikeja Magistrates’ Court on Thursday remanded a 56-year-old estate agent, Lawal Taiwo, in the Kirikiri Custodial Centre for allegedly defiling his neighbour’s 10-year-old daughter.
The magistrate, Mrs B.O. Osunsanmi, who did not take the plea of the defendant, ordered that the case file be forwarded to the Director of Public Prosecutions for legal advice.
Taiwo, who resides at Iju-Ishaga, Lagos, is being tried for defilement.
The News Agency of Nigeria reported that the police prosecutor, ASP Ezekiel Ayorinde, told the court that the defendant committed the offence at his house in September 2018.
He said the defendant unlawfully had carnal knowledge of the girl.
“The defendant called the girl into his room when he discovered that her parents had gone out and had sexual intercourse with her.
“He threatened to kill the girl if she told her parents,” he said.
The prosecutor said the victim, however, told her friend’s mother, who in turn, informed her mother.
“When the parents interrogated their daughter, she told them that the defendant had defiled her on three occasions.
“The parents of the victim reported the case to the police, leading to the arrest of the defendant,” the prosecutor said.
Defilement violates Section 137 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015, and is punishable with up to life imprisonment.
Osunsanmi adjourned the case till March 16 for mention.
Father’s Attempt to Smuggle Hard Drug to Detained Son Quashed by EFCC
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has arrested a 60-year-old fish-farmer, Muyiwa Otulayo, for attempting to smuggle substance believed to be hard drug to his detained son, Damilola.
Otulayo is currently in the commission’s detention at the Ibadan zonal office.
The older Otulayo was on the premises of the EFCC in Ibadan on Monday, February 17, supposedly on a visit to his son.
However, while discussing with the son, an officer of the commission noticed that he handed over a sachet of drugs to him.
The drug was taken from him and kept as an exhibit.
The in-house nurse, who examined the content, confirmed that it was Rohypnol, a tranquillizer, used under strict prescription for the treatment of severe insomnia and assist in anaesthesia.
The drug, according to experts, contains high sedative effect and is rarely used except when prescribed by licensed medical officers.
The younger Otulayo was recently arrested after a criminal case of money laundering, detected in the United Kingdom, was reported against him.
The case, involving the sum of £45,000, was said to be a part of a wider amount (about £500,000) for which he was declared wanted by the London’s Metropolitan Police.
He is on the wanted list of the International Police before the petition was filed at the Ibadan Zonal Office of the EFCC.
It was learnt that officers of the Interpol were already in touch with the commission in respect of the said case.
Further investigations are said to be ongoing on the case.
The commission added that the suspect (older Otulayo) would be handed over to the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency for prosecution.
Kidnappers Abduct Another 12 Travellers in Kogi, Demand N30m
The Kogi State Police Command has confirmed the abduction of another set of 12 persons in Itobe/Ajegu community in the Ofu Local Government Area.
The state Police Public Relations Officer, DSP William Aya, said the victims were travelling from Warri in a Toyota Hiace bus when they were abducted.
He, however, said that the number of victims had yet to be ascertained.
A source told our correspondent that the kidnappers had demanded N30m ransom to free the victims.
He said, “The victims boarded a Toyota Hiace bus belonging to Eleojo Transport Service with number plate KSF 19 XZ from Warri in Delta State on Sunday with 16 passengers heading to Anyigba in the Dekina LGA of the state.”
The source also said four of the passengers alighted at Okene, leaving 12 persons in the car, including the driver.
The vehicle was said to have run into the kidnappers between Itobe and Ajegu in the Ofu LGA, Kogi State.
The driver reportedly escaped and went to the Police at Itobe division to report the incident.
Recall that on Sunday around six o’clock, six passengers were abducted along Lokoja-Kabba road in the state.