Cross River State Governor, Prof. Ben Ayade, on Thursday, said the construction of the state’s deep seaport would commence in three or four months.
Ayade said this in an interview with State House correspondents shortly after meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The governor said he was at the Presidential Villa to update Buhari on the seaport and super highway projects.
He said preliminary and detailed designs had been completed, while the documentation and inauguration of the steering committee were being done.
Ayade said the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, would inaugurate the steering committee later in the day.
He said, “We will have that inauguration as soon as I leave here. And once that happens, the consultancy component will start towards issuing the OPC, which we will use to present to the Federal Executive Council for approval so that construction will start.
“We see that happening in the next three or four months with the speed and tempo I am getting from the government.
“On the issue of the EIA for the super highway, I had a meeting with the Minister of Environment. It was part of what I briefed Mr. President about and she (minister) has shown so much energy and enthusiasm.
“While ensuring she protects the environment, I have reached a critical point of understanding on the way forward. Two projects are going on simultaneously. Almost one year after we got into office, having reached this stage, it is obvious that in four months, there will be full construction.”
Ayade said the seaport would create at least 30,000 jobs for the people of the state.
He added, “It is going to be a place where all modern vessels will pass and it will create at least 30,000 jobs, and because Cross River has 20,000 square kilometres of landmass, it will cause an expansion of the state and that will change the economic and business activities of the state.
“In clear terms, that highway and the deep seaport will benefit the states of Kogi and Nasarawa, because without a deep seaport, it will be almost impossible to exploit the iron ore deposits in those states.”