The governor of Cross River State, Prof. Ben Ayade is bestowed with the prestigious Environment Journalists /Writers Association of Nigeria (EJWAN) as the Best Environment/Earthcare Leadership Award in Nigeria 2016/2017.
The award came just one year of its inauguration by Professor Ben Ayade, the Executive Governor of Cross Rivers State, the positive impact of the state’s environmental agency; Cross River Green Sheriff is being felt positively all over the state, justifying its establishment which has brought honour to the government.
National President of EJWAN, Ambrose Inusa Sule, in a statement on Wednesday said that the emergence of Governor Ayade as the winner of the prestigious award came in recognition of his quiet but immeasurable contributions to the overall environmental transformation of the capital, Calabar and the entire state of Cross River.
In the recent past, the often times accumulated stinking heaps of refuse that littered the city have today become a thing of the past, due to the vision of the hardworking, amiable governor.
The outfit which set out under the name, ‘’Cross River State Green Police’’ but recently had the POLICE changed to Sheriff has three main arms; one responsible for nursery development, the second is in charge of tree planting, while the cadet cadre inaugurated on November 12, 2016 has the mandate to ensure that all drainages are kept clean, all fences painted and that every single house has a minimum of four trees planted in and around its compound. Also, environmental contractors ranging from grass cutting to desilting irrigation, landscaping, urban afforestation renewal, public parks, waste collection and management remain directly under its control and supervision.
The governor who described the agency as the Green Eyes of Africa and emphasized that their overall core mandate is to combat climate change and maintain Calabar’s status as the most beautiful and clean city in the country.
“To achieve this goal, the government has motivated the workers with good wages, provided adequate equipment, patrol vehicles and communication gadgets for them to be effective in carrying out their duties and ensure success of the agency.
It is also worthy to mention that the legalization of street trading by the Ayade administration which many feared will take its toll on sanitation in Calabar has, on the contrary, become a rare success. Before now hawkers faced daily harassment on the streets because it was believed their activities made the environment untidy. But Gov. Ayade showed his masterstroke by legalizing street trading thereby giving his people ease of eking out a living daily then balanced the equation of keeping the city clean with the establishment of the Green Sheriff, which also provided the much needed jobs to thousands it employs,” he said.
These achievements and others EJWAN considered in conferring the Best Environment/Earthcare Leadership Award 2016 on his Excellency, Prof. Senator Ben B. Ayade, the Governor of Cross River State.
Mathew Dadiya, Abuja