Former Presidential Adviser on National Assembly Matters, Senator Florence Ita-Giwa, has expressed displeasure over the neglect suffered by her people in the hands of the federal government, noting that the Bakassi people are refugees and not Internally Displaced Persons.
In a statement made available to newsmen on Sunday, she argued that her people are not cowards and that their silence should not be mistaken for weakness noting that she has been so busy pacifying them not to take laws into their hands because she sees President Muhammadu Buhari as a man of the people who will soon address their plight.
Ita Giwa noted that it was Bakassi land that was ceded and not the people and that they made a choice to remain as Nigerians but regretted that 11 years after, over 4000 refugees are still wallowing in poverty and suffering because the federal government has failed to properly resettle them in their choice location where they registered and voted for their choice candidates during the previous elections.
She added that Bakassi people and the entire people of Cross River State are suffering since the loss of their oil wells and other benefits.
The statement reads in parts:” I am using this medium again to protest the insensitivity of the federal government to our collective plight as Bakassi people.
“As far as I know, Bakassi Local Government Area is still in Cross River and it is constitutionally catered for like every other council areas but sadly we have been neglected. Even the host community has suffered a lot of inconveniences and they are not being encouraged in any way with social facilities.
“The Buhari administration is busy rebuilding the North East but feel so unconcerned about the Bakassi people In spite of the fact that our situation existed before Boko Haram”.
“Did we commit a crime by choosing to remain In our fatherland? Why rebuild North East and abandon Bakassi? My people are refugees and they should be rehabilitated.”
She added that the Cross River State government alone cannot meet their needs and that if the Buhari administration refused to come to their rescue, they may be forced to protest naked and cry out to God.