Cross River State Governor Suspends SEMA DG Following Controversial Appointments

In a swift and unprecedented move, His Excellency, Senator (Prince) Bassey Edet Otu, the Governor of Cross River State, has ordered the immediate suspension of Chief (Mrs.) Angela Ogeyi Odey, the Director General of the Cross River State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA). The suspension comes barely 24 hours after a controversial wave of appointments made by Mrs. Odey, which many have criticized as lopsided.

The Governor’s directive, issued on Monday, October 30, 2023, has sent shockwaves through the state’s political landscape. Mrs. Odey is instructed to hand over her duties to the most senior director within the agency before the close of business today.

While no official reason has been given for the suspension, it is widely believed to be a direct response to the contentious appointments that raised concerns about regional representation. The Director General had, in a move that raised eyebrows, appointed over 14 individuals from the northern Cross River extraction to various positions within SEMA.

In a statement released by Emmanuel Ogbeche, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, it was made clear that during her suspension, Mrs. Odey is prohibited from any involvement in the administration of SEMA, unless otherwise directed by the Governor himself.

The controversy surrounding the appointments and subsequent suspension has ignited a debate within the state’s political circles and among the general public. Critics argue that such appointments should be based on merit and inclusivity, rather than perceived Senatorial biases.

Governor Bassey Edet Otu, known for his commitment to unity and fairness, seems to have taken a decisive stance to address the issue swiftly. It remains to be seen how this suspension will impact SEMA’s future leadership and the agency’s efforts in addressing emergencies and disaster management in Cross River State.

As the dust settles, the people of Cross River State eagerly await further developments, hoping for a resolution that will promote unity, transparency, and effective disaster management in the State.