Some stakeholders in Cross River State have expressed worry that barely one month to the handover of power to Prince Bassey Otu as Governor of the State, the outgoing Governor, Ben Ayade, has not inaugurated a transition committee.
They said this does not augur well and would not help the incoming governor as he would need time to study the records of government business.
A good governance advocate and former journalist, Sir Peter Nandi Bette, said, “I am not a lawyer, so I may not know the legal implications of a governor who is finishing his tenure not setting up a transition committee even as handing over date is just about a month away.
“One cannot remember if his predecessor, Gov Liyel Imoke ever instituted any transition committee when he handed over to Gov Ayade. But, what righteousness is there in copying something that is not correct?”
He urged him to properly guide the incoming governor so that he does not make avoidable mistakes during his first 100 days in office.
Also reacting, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SAN, Mba Ukweni, called on Gov Ayade to do the proper thing by inaugurating a transition committee.
He said Ayade should not feel that there are no people in the state that can ask him questions.
Ukweni said he is not surprised that one month to the end of his tenure he has not set up a transition committee to prepare his handover notes to Otu.
“Did you expect anything different from Ayade? The manner the govenor has been carrying on during his tenure should not surprise anyone that he has not put up such a committee.
“Don’t even be surprised that on the D-Day there might not be any hand over notes from Ayade at all. It is his style.
“But I know that when Senator Liyel Imoke was about to leave power in 2015, he set up Transition Committee and even moved Ayade to a presidential lodge in Calabar where he received daily briefings. I know because I handled some of his legal matters then. I met him there many times.
“However, I am aware that Prince Otu has set up his own transition committee without waiting for Ayade.”
He said that he and other elders in the state who desire proper legacy for posterity will ensure that outgoing governor is made to account for his tenure.
Reacting to Ayade’s recent announcement that government officials habitually steal government properties, the lawyer also spoke about having Ayade to account for his 8 years tenure in the state.
“If Governor-elect, Prince Bassey Otu won’t be courageous enough to probe Governor Ben Ayade when he takes over next month, we the elders will definitely stand up, ask questions and make him to give accounts of his transactions for the eight years he served,” he said.