Andy Esiet, Calabar
The Cross River State drug manufacturing industry, CalaPharm is expected to cut down Nigeria’s drug importation by 15 billion US dollars.
An All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship aspirant in the state, Mr. Ben Aka who said this at weekend after a tour of the State’s pharmaceutical industry (calapharm) and others in the Ayade Park, stated that, “Governor Ben Ayade is a genius. I cannot imagine what God has deposited in such a being. You need to see what is happening here. Do you know with this factory Nigeria is going to cut half of its importation of drugs from India and all other Asian countries?”
Akak who is a top business man in the state said, “currently, do you know how much Nigeria spends on importation of drugs annually? We are talking about 30 billion US dollars. With the factory alone you are cutting it into half and that is why this project is necessary and we as a consortium we are partnering with them (Indian firm). Currently we are talking with private investors who are ready to invest not only in the infrastructure but also in our medical tourism. As we speak, a company has already given us their interest to come in and invest in the Calapharm”.
The young politician who was given an express approval by the governor to tour the state’s projects, promised to connect all the Ayade projects together and “we are going to bring in some initiative and smart way of doing things and , create an impact of the kind of change you must bring to bare. If I never toured this projects, there wouldn’t be a company in India that is talking about taking over the Calapharm.
“So the benefit is already here and more benefits are going to come by the grace of God. This is exceptional. We need to have a way of thanking this man. I wish Cross Riverians could troop in here and see what is going on. The only thing I want to tell us is that I thank the day God brought him to Cross River and I am happy that one is having the privilege to learn from him and possibly to succeed him”.
On medical tourism, he said the Specialist General Hospital is massive and “is similar to what people all over the world fly to and that is why the first thing that came to my mind was that at the completion of that project in the next few weeks, we will cut short most of our trips abroad for medical treatment because everything you need is there. I am proud to say that being a Cross Riverian and having somebody like Governor Ben Ayade is not just a great thing for us but its also the fact that he has been able to match his words with his actions and that is why we are doing this to let the world know he’s doing a lot that they know not of.
“If you go through the hospital, you will see that everything is completely digitalised. It is based on smart mode and you don’t need to have interface with the next person because with the card you can get all the points and so it is indeed a blessing to us and moreover, putting it in a community whereby even the ordinary people can access it is another scoring point for him …we have spoken with companies who are ready to invest not only in the infrastructure but also in the medical tourism” .
He said Ayade “has laid the foundation. Ours is to continue from there, and not just continue, we are going to link it because he has provided the enabling environment for us to link. He has made my job easier. You just need to think a little bit smarter and then you put Cross River State there. But again, do you know how India started? Do you know the foundation of Singapore? We have seen those things. In few years to come the destination of Africa will be Calabar, and it will be Cross River. You and I will be proud of that”