Cross River State governor, Sir Ben Ayade has advocated for stronger ties between the state and the Central African country of Equatorial Guinea in maritime and aviation.
Ayade made the call Wednesday, when the new Equatorial Guinea Consular-General to Nigeria, Ildel Fonso Ondo Nchama presented his Letter of Credence to him at the state executive council chamber in Calabar.
The governor said he was happy to “wholeheartedly accept this Letter of Credence and all its associated credentials and with joy, pride and honor I congratulate you and welcome you.”
Ayade said he was in no doubt that the new Consular-General will be able to discharge his duties “diligently while you are here in Cross River and indeed Calabar, which is the real centre of African tourism.”
While looking forward to stronger trade ties between Equatorial Guinea and Cross River, Ayade said “it is my strong conviction that the relationship between Equatorial Guinea and Cross River State and indeed, on a larger scale Nigeria, will be facilitated. I am excited that there will be bigger commercial activities and there will be stronger unity and bond courtesy of a young, ebullient and dynamic Consular-General.
“It is my hope therefore, that your coming here as the Consular-General of Equatorial Guinea to Cross River State will give us the opportunity to open up international air cargoes between Calabar and Equatorial Guinea.
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“We look forward to meeting with your president very soon to be able to establish the air operating license between Calabar and Malabo. Hopefully in no distant future, the maritime corridor and the maritime relationship will also be exploited. We believe that there are better opportunities for us to work together and collaborate.”
Earlier, Consul Ondo Nchama, while presenting his Letter of Credence, told the governor that “It is necessary to have a Consular-General here in Calabar, Cross River State because of the cordial relationship existing between Equatorial Guinea and Nigeria.”