By Emma Una
CALABAR—PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari, yesterday in Calabar, said the superhighway being constructed by the Cross River State governor, Senator Ben Ayade, was a project that would expand the economic frontiers of not just the state, but the entire country.
According to the President, the road would give access to markets in Chad, Niger and other parts of the region.
President Buhari, who spoke in Obung village of Akamkpa Local Government Area of the state, while on a working visit to Cross River State to conduct the ground-breaking of the 260 kilometres superhighway, said the Federal Government would assist the Cross River State Government to ensure completion of the road.
He said: “That I am personally here to perform the groundbreaking shows the importance my government attaches to this project which is a significant milestone in the economic development of not just Cross River State but the entire country. The road will open up a new vista of economic opportunities for Nigeria as it will bring multiplier effect to the economy and more importantly this is happening under my Presidency. I assure my brother and governor of Cross River State, Professor Ben Ayade, of my commitment and that of the Federal Government, to ensure its completion and that of the Deep Sea Port.”
In his speech, Professor Ayade said the road would serve as an evacuation corridor for equipment, goods and personnel from the Deep Sea Port in Bakassi in the southern part of the country, to the northern part of the country and would be completed between four and five years.
He said at present it took between four and five hours to move from Calabar to Katsina Ala, a border town between Cross River and Benue states, explaining that with the super-highway, it would take just one hour thirty minutes to make the journey.
According to him, the Bank of Infrastructure and several commercial banks had already put together 500 million Euros to fast-track the construction of the road.
The governor said the road would have digital internet connectivity all through the 260 kilometre distance, speed cameras and toilet faculties, among others.
Ayade disclosed that the Benue State governor had promised to construct a similar highway from Katsin Ala junction, to its border with Nasarawa State, hoping that the Nasararwa State Government would extend it to Abuja and gradually it would get to Chad, Egypt and Morocco.