By Aaron Stephenson
The Cross River state government has been accused of hijacking the Federal Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP) in the state.
The programme is one of the poverty alleviation schemes initiated by the
federal government and facilitated by the Bank of Industry. Beneficiaries of the GEEP programme are expected to be selected across the
eighteen local government areas of the state.
But the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Cross River has castigated the state government for ‘illegally’ laying claim to the scheme initiated by the federal government.
The state Assistant Organizing Secretary of the Party, Chief Francis Ekpenyong told journalists in Calabar that it was morally wrong for the Cross River state government to claim credit for a programme not initiated by the state.
Chief Ekpenyong disclosed that the state benefitted from the Enterprise and Empowerment Programme through the intervention of the Minister for Niger Delta Affairs, Pastor Usani Uguru Usani.
According to him, ‘the Enterprise and Empowerment Programme is a federal government initiative and the state has no hands in it. It is unfortunate that the state government has hijacked this laudable scheme.’
He condemned in ‘totality’ the state government’s action and urge the government ‘to emulate the federal government’s gesture by initiating similar programmes that will be beneficial to residents of the state.’
Chief Ekpenyong commended President Mohammadu Buhari, Minister for Niger Delta Affairs, Pastor Usani Usani and the Bank of Industry for ensuring that Cross River benefited from the programme.