The Executive Secretary of Calabar Carnival Commission, Mr Austin Cobham, has debunked claims by Victor Akpojovo that Dangote supported the Commission with N30million to host the African Food Festival in 2017 in Calabar.
Cobham explained that the state government did not fund the festival, adding that the pilot festival was supported as a result of the presentation made to Dangote.
He said that it was the Carnival Commission that brought in Victor Akpojovo to serve as a “Celebrity Chef” for the festival.
He added that the idea for the festival was initiated by Sen. Florence Ita-Giwa towards the end of the year and the Carnival Commission in its wisdom wrote letters to Dangote, Coca-cola and a tomato company, seeking for co-sponsorship.
“It was only Dangote that came in with N10million and that was all the funds that came in from outside. Everything that came out for the funding of the festival in 2017 was N10million.
“Victor Akpojovos claim of 30million is misleading
“We want to put this clear out there that there was no agreement whatsoever with Akpojovo for any contract with the Carnival Commission.
“Dangote is a reputable company, we urge him to get his facts right before coming out to make false statements,” he said.
Cobham explained that all food items donated were used for the purposes identified, adding that neither the sponsors nor the participants have had any complaint up until now.
“It is our opinion that the current sad situation in the country and the state should not be used as an opportunity to settle personal scores. This is the time for healing and reconciliation.
Efforts should be made to heal the state and not to aggravate an already tensed situation.
The Commission is already involved in resolving the backlog of pending issues and would not like to be dragged into personal fights,” he said.