Governor Ben Ayade has suspended the 2021 annual Calabar carnival due to insecurity and the outbreak of the Omicron COVID-19 variant.
Mr Linus Obogo, Deputy Chief Press Secretary to Gov. Ayade, disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday in Calabar.
According to Obogo, the decision to suspend the annual festival was reached unanimously at a meeting with the governor, the State Executive Council members and stakeholders of the carnival.
“The gathering was to unveil the theme of this year’s carnival but based on the emergence of the new variant called omicron and the advice by health experts that it kills faster than another variant, it was unanimously agreed that the carnival is suspended after the governor put it up for consideration.
“The carnival band leaders and other stakeholders agreed that for public health and safety, the carnival is suspended.
“Also, there is an emerging security report which indicates that the event may be taken over by some hoodlums.
“To avoid all of these from happening, it was advised that the carnival be suspended so that people are not caught unawares,” Obogo said.