The Nigerian Medical Students Association (NIMSA) expressed its dismay at the apparent lack of empathy displayed by the Cross River State government. NIMSA revealed that no government official had visited or contacted the victims or their families since the tragic incident that occurred on Saturday.
NIMSA disclosed that the only individual who showed concern and provided assistance was Senator Asuquo Ekpeyong Jr., representing the Southern senatorial district of the state. Senator Ekpeyong visited the affected individuals, personally covering some expenses and transportation costs for ten of the victims to return to their respective destinations.
Dr. Ejim Egba, the National President of NIMSA, expressed deep disappointment during a telephone conversation with journalists. He emphasized that three days after the fatal accident claimed the lives of three of his colleagues, the state government had not reached out to NIMSA, the survivors, or the victims’ families.
Dr. Egba stated, “It is disheartening that after three days since the incident happened, nobody from the Cross River State government has reached out to us. It seems they lack empathy for what happened. Simply closing down the resort or suspending boat cruises is not enough. They should at least extend their support to those affected or show some concern.”
He continued, “This incident occurred in the paradise city, the hub of tourism and hospitality, yet no calls, no visits to the hospital. Even the individuals who were hospitalized have been discharged. Only Senator Asuquo Ekpeyong visited and provided assistance, but as a Senator and not as a representative of the state government.”
Dr. Egba expressed sadness and heartbreak, highlighting that as a native of the state, he and his colleagues had visited to explore their homeland, but tragically lost their lives without any acknowledgment or care from the government.
“We will continue to monitor the resort. If they reopen the place without implementing the necessary safety measures, we will raise the alarm. We do not want such an incident to happen again,” Dr. Egba declared.
When contacted, an anonymous government official stated, “This is an unfortunate incident, but it is important to note that this administration prioritizes the people. The government will certainly respond, and we are already taking necessary steps, which is why the place was shut down initially. We will address the situation appropriately.”