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ECCIMA sets agenda for Southeast governors



The Enugu Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture (ECCIMA) wants governors in the Southeast geo-political zone to put infrastructure in place for the economic development of the zone.

The Director General of the chamber, Mr Emeka Okereke, made the appeal on Thursday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Enugu.

Okereke specifically cited intra-city and inter-state rail system as the most desirable facility for the southeast at the moment.

He said the zone was about the only zone in the country without a functional railway transportation system.

“Governors of the southeast can in collaboration with private investors look for a way to bring railway system to the zone.

“It is very necessary and if we are able to achieve that, it will spark up more investments in the area because the southeast is an investment corridor.”

Okereke said that his expectation was that the next dispensation would trigger more development by state governors in the zone.

On economic development in Enugu State, Okereke said that ECCIMA was pleased with the achievements of Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi in the last four years, urging him to collaborate with his brother governors in setting up common infrastructure in the zone.

The director-general praised the peace and tranquility, which he said, had characterised the administration of Ugwuanyi in the past four years.

“For any meaningful development to thrive, the issue of security and peace are of essence and the governor has done well in this regard.

“Beyond this, we commend the government on the steps it has taken to address the infrastructure deficit that is prevalent in our environment.

“We are also happy that the World Bank ranked the state as the second best for business investments.”

Okereke said the State Government also did well by setting up the Enugu Business Council to identify investment policy gaps and deficits in the business environment.

“For instance, in the issue of harmonisation of taxes and levies, the council has gone a long way to look at it and we hope that without further delay, the policy paper will be released.”

He said that in spite of the ranking of the state, “a more clement business environment is still needed in the state.

“The State Government needs to do more. The first four years of the governor has been a blessing to residents of the state but we hope the next tenure will address other concerns.”

Okereke said there were many roads in rural and urban centres in the state that needed attention.