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Death of 3 medical students: Business owners beg Otu to reopen Marina Resort


Some of the Nigerian medical students leaders at the Marina Resort, Calabar

By Akpan David, Calabar

Gifts shop owners, restaurateurs, and others doing service and entertainment businesses at the famous Calabar Marina Resort have appealed to Governor Bassey Otu of Cross River State to reopen it.

They have lamented that the closure has subjected them, their families, their stocks to losses, suffering and perishing.

In the early week of June 2023, Nigerian universities medical students converged in Calabar for their annual retreat, and a few went on a boat cruise from the resort where it capsized in the Calabar waterways.  11 students were rescued but three died.

As a result, the state governor ordered shut down of the  resort where the famous slave history museum situates and where fun seekers troop to recline and watch the water.

Management staff are presently undergoing interrogation by the stste authorities.

Some of the shop owners, Madam Josephine Atim who runs an eatery said, “My food stocks have perished completely.  I have lost so much. Fun seekers don’t come to this resort any more. This is the only business I have. My family all depends on it.  Let the governor help us alleviate this suffering.

Another is James Udo who also has an artefacts and gifts shop. “Since the shut down nearly one month now, my shop ha been under lock and key. How do I survive? When tourists and fun seekers were coming, we were making sales. But now no more sales.”

A boat owner, Obo Effiom said the government was unjustly depriving them of their daily income.

Security personnel especially policemen were seen looking over the sprawling resort.

Police PRO Irene Ugbo said “That three Nigerian students died in the water as a result of bad management of the boat by the resort managers is a very serious issue. Investigation is still ongoing.”

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