The Cross River State Governor Professor Benedict Ayade has been admitted as a graduate diploma sudent in the faculty of law at the University of Calabar. Gov. Ayade gained admission into the post-graduate Law program two weeks ago and has since completed his registration procedures at the University of Calabar registry and the law faculty.
A lecturer at the faculty and a classmate of the governor who both wish to remain anonymous confirmed that the Governor attended first lectures on Thursday, last week.
This development has been greeted with mix reactions from different sides of the political divide. While the governor’s associates are full of praise for the governor for his humility to enroll at school and learn as a student even after making the professorial cadre in the academia and rising to the helm of political leadership in his state.
Some members of the state opposition party berated the governor for this act describing it as a show of idleness. Speaking in Calabar on Tuesday, the APC stakeholders described Ayade’s return-to-school as a sign of redundancy and an indication that the PDP-led leadership lacks direction and vision.
The stakeholders reaction was expressed by the State Chairman of APC, Mr. John Ochala. The APC chieftain said that any serious-minded governor will not leave governance for school, recalling that no governor in the history of the country has ever done that. Ochala regretted that the state had been handed over to an unserious leadership that has continued to drag it backward, saying that the governor has remained in office without any tangible achievement.
He said: “APC had always known that the present administration of PDP in the state was never serious in the first place.
“We have dilapidated roads all over the state, look at our schools, our health infrastructure, our revenue generation capacity, and all other infrastructures. These are not enough to bother a governor. All that bothers him is to use public funds to go to school. Why didn’t he go to school when he was a Senator?
“He is doing this to divert peoples’ attention from his failed administration. Besides, what are the socio-political or economic values of going to school to Cross Riverians? From his performance, one can say that all the schools he attended before now has in no way impacted positively on Cross Riverians other than economic underdevelopment”
The APC chairman said in spite of numerous challenges including communal clashes here and there the governor still travels outside the state too often, wondering what would become of the governance now he has become a student at UNICAL.
The party decried the non-contact of local government election in the state, saying such an unconstitutional act has rendered governance at the local impotent.
Also reacting on behalf of Cross River Elders Gorum, Chief Martins Agbor, said Governor Ayade has betrayed Cross Ruverians by abandoning governance back to school.
Agbor expressed worry how the Governor would cope with day-to-day administration and then combing it with daily academic work, saying the electorate are disappointed his attitude to governance in this second coming.
“I can tell you that if he had enrolled for a second degree in law for his first time, we would not have voted for him. He promised to make life better when he comes back and we believed him. Five months into his second term he is yet to appoint commissioners neither has he inaugurated any project as other Governors did in their one hundred days in office.
“Rather What we got from his media aides are praises of Ayade being the first serving Governor to be enrolled for law programme. It is very sad.”
Describing the criticisms as sheer idiocy, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr. Christian Ita, said there is no law stopping anybody from going to school even when the person is occupying a public office.
“The criticism is sheer idiocy because there is no law stopping anybody from going to school, including those occupying public office. Mugabe had most of his degrees while in public office.
“Modern governance runs at institutional levels and the governor, not being a superman, has put into place institutions that will drive development,” he stated.