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C’ River Commissioner, staff barricade bank over cash withdrawal hitches

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By Joseph Kingston, Calabar

Barring any last minute intervention, the Cross River State government-owned Cally Air may be grounded over inability of its aviation ministry to withdraw monies deposited in  one of the new generation banks (name withheld) to facilitate insurance payment which is set to expire on Friday, August 27.

To compel the Commercial bank to allow the ministry to make withdrawals, the State’s Commissioner for Aviation, Rt. Hon Jake Otu Enyia, and some staff of the ministry, Thursday, protested and barricaded the premises of the said bank in Calabar.

Enyia accused the bank of deliberately trying to frustrate Cally Air by making it practically impossible for the ministry to withdraw monies deposited therein.

He said, “We have been here since last week trying to withdraw our money from this Bank. They keep telling us come tomorrow and all that. We took this action because we need the money for the servicing of our Aircraft and to complete the renewal of our insurance, otherwise our Aircrafts will be grounded.”

The Commissioner further informed that the ministry is not asking for a loan, “we came to withdraw our money and nobody is telling us why we cannot withdraw our money,” he lamented.

Enyia explained to Journalists that the State government has an account with the said bank and that the money the ministry was seeking to withdraw was for maintenance of the two Cally Air aircrafts and to complete insurance payment.

Wondering why the bank was allegedly playing what he referred to as double standard, the Commissioner said, “We are not going to allow anybody to come out of the Bank until our money is paid. We are not going anywhere and nobody is going home today”

Our correspondent reports that access to the bank was blocked for hours as they demanded that officials explain why the ministry should not withdraw its money to fund a government project.

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