By: Achiane Adams, CRS-MOI Officer reporting from Min. of Culture and Tourism Development

Cross River State Governor, Sen. Prof. Ben Ayade, has re-emphasised the need for humanity, as he flagged off the maiden edition of the AKWACROSS Cycling Parade, at the 11-11 Roundabout, Calabar.

Representing the Governor, the Deputy Governor, Prof. Ivara Ejemot Esu said the parade with the theme, "Cycling for Humanity", is a means to strengthening the already existing love and unity between Cross River and Akwa Ibom States adding that the future generations of both States should be able to exhibit humanity by diffusing the supposed animosity that exist between the Sister States because of the ceded oil wells.

"The Supreme Court judgement should be played down by our Sister State, saying to us, take some oil wells so that you too can benefit from the 13% derivation wealth as an oil producing State.

Also, plans should be made in the future to invite neighboring States such as Ebonyi and others to be part of this beautiful thing but the nomenclature should remain - AkwaCross Cycling Parade" he added.

Appreciating Governor Ben Ayade for his presence at the flag off, the  Commissioner, for Culture and Tourism Development, Mr. Eric Anderson, said that  AkwaCross "Cycling for Humanity", is primarily to promote unity between the Sister States and a call to end the communal clashes between Ikot Offiong in Odukpani Local Government Area of Cross River and Oku Iboku in Itu Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State.

The Deputy National Coach, Nigeria Federation of Cyclers, Mr Emmanuel Onnasanya, said that apart from keeping fit, such platforms serve as hatching grounds for discovering new talents that can represent Nigeria at International sporting events.

The cycling route which passed through Calabar Road to Edgerly, Mayne Avenue, Ettagbor, Goldie, IBB, Marian, MCC, Ikot Ishie, Ikot Ansa, Murtala Mohammed Highway, Diamond Hill and Marina Resort, saw Cyclers cover about 38 Kilometers.

Although, not competitive, the parade had Canaan City Cyclers, from Cross River State; Dynamic Cycling Club, Uyo; and e-Machine, Eket, Akwa Ibom State, gracing the event. AkwaCross Cycling Parade, which will be held annually, will hold in the months of March and June, in Cross River and Akwa Ibom States, respectively.

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